Op/Ed: Obamacare: A Healthy Workforce is Essential to A Healthy Economy
(WASHINGTON - June 29, 2012) - As an organization, the U.S. Black Chamber, Inc. represents the interests of over 200,000 businesses -- most of which would be categorized as "small." We have watched with interest as challenges to the Affordable Care Act found their way to the Supreme Court.
To say the least, we are pleased with the Court's decision upholding the constitutionality of President Obama's historic legislation, designed to ensure the availability of all Americans to access adequate healthcare.
Small businesses face many of the same issues, and the spiraling cost of healthcare impacts them all, whether Black-owned or not. But with most of our members' employees predisposed to diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease and obesity (to name a few disproportionate health concerns of African-Americans), Black-owned businesses literally succeed or fail, based on the health of the owner and his or her employees.
The Supreme Court decision is a huge victory for Americans across the country, especially the 7 million African-Americans covered by the Affordable Care Act in 2014.
5.5 million African-Americans with private health insurance WILL KEEP their coverage for preventive services without paying an extra penny at their doctor's office.
More than 2.4 million African-American seniors with Medicare have received free preventive services such as diabetes screenings.
About 410,000 more African-American young adults who would otherwise be uninsured gained coverage due to the law.
This law is saving lives and will continue to save lives by making healthcare even more accessible and affordable.
President Obama recognizes the impact on productivity that lack of access to healthcare poses in an economy already struggling with other destabilizing factors. The U.S. Black Chamber, Inc. understands and believes that the Affordable Care Act represents significant cost-savings to our members, but more importantly, ensures access to healthcare that will ensure the long-term viability of the businesses we represent.
In the spirit of success,
Ron Busby, Sr.
U.S. Black Chamber, Inc.