Janet Napolitano on Health Care

Democratic AZ Governor; Designee for Secretary of Homeland Security


Expanded access to KidsCare and AHCCCS

In these difficult times, we are called to serve the Arizona families hit hardest by the economic storm. In the past year, more than 70,000 Arizonans have enrolled in state health care through AHCCCS and KidsCare. It would be wrong to hurt those who are ill or disabled in the name of balancing the budget.

One imperative is to protect our advances in health care, including expanded access to KidsCare for families that need it, investments in health care technology to improve the delivery of care and substantial savings on prescription drugs. Some fear that little can be done right now about these pressing problems; but Congress is likely to increase aid for state Medicaid programs. And when this happens, Arizona can continue its work to improve health care by enacting quality-of-care measures, building our electronic health records infrastructure and implementing other reforms necessary to ensure that every Arizona family has access to a doctor when they need one.

Source: Arizona 2009 State of the State Address , Jan 12, 2009

Better health care policies for seniors

I want to start with my efforts to help seniors combat prescription drug prices. My administration built a prescription discount program that takes advantage of the purchasing power of Arizona’s large senior population. Beginning today, all Medicare- eligible Arizonans will receive a CoppeRx-Card for prescription drug discounts. The card is free, easy to understand, and carries more substantial discounts. It does more to help Medicare-eligible seniors than any other state discount card in America.
Source: 2004 State of the State speech to Arizona Legislature , Jan 12, 2004

Ensure children are immunized & screened for health problems

I have asked the Arizona School Readiness Board to develop a plan to ensure that all children are screened for health problems prior to entering preschool and kindergarten, so that hearing, vision and developmental issues can be identified early on. We also need to increase the number of children getting basic immunization. One in four Arizona children has not been immunized by age 2, which increases their rate of illness, and even mortality.
Source: 2004 State of the State speech to Arizona Legislature , Jan 12, 2004

Establish "report cards" on HMO quality of care.

Napolitano adopted the manifesto, "A New Agenda for the New Decade":

Promote Universal Access and Quality in Health Care
That more than 40 million Americans lack health insurance is one of our society’s most glaring inequities. Lack of insurance jeopardizes the health of disadvantaged Americans and also imposes high costs on everyone else when the uninsured lack preventive care and get treatment from emergency rooms. Washington provides a tax subsidy for insurance for Americans who get coverage from their employers but offers nothing to workers who don’t have job-based coverage.

Markets alone cannot assure universal access to health coverage. Government should enable all low-income families to buy health insurance. Individuals must take responsibility for insuring themselves and their families whether or not they qualify for public assistance.

Finally, to help promote higher quality in health care for all Americans, we need reliable information on the quality of health care delivered by health plans and providers; a “patient’s bill of rights” that ensures access to medically necessary care; and a system in which private health plans compete on the basis of quality as well as cost.

Source: The Hyde Park Declaration 00-DLC5 on Aug 1, 2000

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Page last updated: Mar 13, 2021