The goal is to help people better understand what Medicaid means to individuals and their communities
This week the American Cancer Society and the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) launched a new public education campaign, Medicaid Covers US, to advance our mission-critical work in the area of access to health coverage for individuals and families with low incomes.
The campaign is a deliberate, robust, and strategic project that aims to bring together decision makers, community members, and the public in a dialogue about the critical services Medicaid provides. The campaign focuses on six target states: Alabama, Georgia, Kansas, North Carolina, Virginia, and Louisiana. Since September of 2018, ACS CAN staff have been traveling throughout these states gathering stories from patients and health care providers about what Medicaid has meant to them and/or what it could mean for them if more people had access to it.
The education goal of the campaign is to help people better understand what Medicaid means to individuals and their communities. As a health insurance program from low-income children and adults, seniors, and people with disabilities, Medicaid helps millions of Americans manage their care – including an estimated 2.3 million Americans with a history of cancer.
Having health insurance through Medicaid not only helps people when they are sick, but it helps people stay healthy, so they can go to work, care for their families, and pay their bills. It helps communities thrive by keeping hospital doors open to provide lifesaving care, securing more jobs, and keeping the workforce strong. It supports schools and students by helping kids get screening services and manage health issues like asthma or vision problems to help them better participate and succeed in school.
The campaign kicked off on Tuesday in Overland Park, Kansas, with the premiere of a short documentary, Critical Condition: Health in the Heartland. The film features Kansas community members discussing their own experiences as they strive to take care of themselves and their families in the face of serious diagnoses and without health insurance. It also features health care providers who speak to the struggle of helping patients and keeping facilities open when so many in their communities are uninsured. Following the screening, a panel featuring some of the individuals in the film, health care professionals, and ACS CAN leadership discussed the film and other stories featured in the campaign.
The new Medicaid Covers US website highlights stories from patients with serious diseases who’ve received lifesaving care through Medicaid, and from providers who rely on the program to be able to reach as many residents in their communities as they can, and to support their hospitals and clinics. Also available on the website are ACS CAN-commissioned research on public support for Medicaid and other fact sheets and resources.
If you have questions about Medicaid Covers US, please contact Citseko Staples, ACS CAN director, State & Local Campaigns.