Antonio Delgado Newsletter
I always look forward to writing to you with updates, but this week I’m especially glad to be reporting back on the new health care bill I recently introduced. From my 11 town halls throughout the district to meetings I’ve had with constituents in DC and Upstate New York, I hear constantly about our health care crisis and what we’re going to do about rising costs and lack of quality care.
I came here to Congress with a commitment to address these pressing issues, and I’m very glad to be delivering on that commitment now.
As the wealthiest country in the world, there is simply no excuse for us to be the only developed country left without universal health care. There are a lot of different ways to achieve universal health care – and I believe that a public option is the best way for us to get there.
That’s why I was pleased to introduce the Medicare-X Choice Act, which will finally bring our country to universal health care coverage. My bill would combine Medicare physician networks and reimbursement rates with ACA coverage standards to create a new, public option available to all Americans. It would allow those who are happy with their employer-provided insurance to keep it, while offering another, more affordable coverage option to those in need.
With this bill, we’re introducing more choice and more competition to the marketplace, starting in the places that need it most—like rural areas with provider shortages. This much-needed competition will drive down costs for everyone. It’s one key part of my efforts to bring down health care costs and ensure quality care for all Upstate New Yorkers.
Watch my speech by clicking the picture below:
Read on below to learn more about my second in-district work period which focused on health care in our region, and additional legislative highlights, including the passage of the Paycheck Fairness Act and the Violence Against Women Act. Thanks for tuning in!
SURVEY: YOUR PRIORITIES
With our focus on health care, I wanted to hear directly from you about your priorities in this space.
It’s not complicated: women should be paid the same as men for the same work – but that’s just not the case right now. One of our biggest milestones in the House recently was passing the Paycheck Fairness Act. I am an original cosponsor of the bill, and I was glad to see bipartisan support for it. Folks in Upstate New York and across the country need this legislation: It would take significant steps toward rectifying pay disparities that hurt women, families, and our entire economy.
We also passed the Violence Against Women Act, a bill I am a proud cosponsor of. First passed in 1994, the landmark legislation provides critical support to women and law enforcement to prevent sexual assault and domestic violence, and help survivors of unconscionable attacks. This has always been a bipartisan priority, and I hope that the Senate will follow our lead in reauthorizing this bill.
Not only did I introduce a public option bill, I was proud to join my colleagues in helping to introduce the Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care More Affordable Act of 2019, which preserves the Affordable Care Act’s protections for those with pre-existing conditions and expands health care affordability and accessibility. And recently, with the Administration joining the lawsuit threatening the ACA and pre-existing condition coverage, I was glad to join my colleagues in voting to condemn this lawsuit. I will continue to speak out against this potentially devastating attack with a strong voice.
I was also glad to cosponsor the following key bills:
- EACH Woman Act, which ensures that all women – regardless of their income level – can make their own choices about their reproductive health care.
- Climate Action Now Act, which requires the Administration to fulfill the commitments our country made in joining the Paris Climate Accord.
Our second in-district work period focused on health care – I spent the week touring health care facilities, meeting with constituents, and hearing about the challenges that rural communities face regarding access and affordability.
I toured the DaVita Catskill Dialysis Center, where I heard about how the facility prioritizes quality of life in its patient care. I toured Margaretville Hospital in Delaware County, where I learned about the services they offer, including life-saving trauma care and off-site psychiatric care for young people dealing with mental illness and the important role of telemedicine. And I toured Columbia Memorial Hospital, hearing about how they handle the unique challenges of serving such a large geographic area, including Columbia and Greene Counties, and the cutting-edge technology they use to enhance patient care and monitor patients after they’re discharged.
I was also very glad to speak at the ribbon cutting for the new Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood facility! The organization provides invaluable services to our region, and I was honored to stand with so many community leaders and folks on the front lines of fighting for reproductive justice.
In addition to our health care events, I held the first meeting of our Agriculture Advisory Committee and held a budget workshop where participants learned about the federal budget-making process at Columbia-Greene Community College. Protecting our environment was another key focus of the week, and I was glad to sit down with the Upper Delaware Council, Town of Nassau officials, the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance, and the Watershed Agricultural Council to hear about the environmental issues impacting our communities. I also hosted a forum with Coxsackie-Athens High School students and families, spoke at the Mohawk Watershed Symposium, and spoke at a Columbia County Honor a Veteran Committee ceremony.
This month we’re also starting mobile office hours, where folks can come by and meet with my staff to get assistance with casework, which can include any type of support with federal services, from small business grants to Social Security benefits to VA services. You can find details and locations here.
HIGHLIGHT: SUPPORTING OUR VETERANS
I recently wrote a piece for the Times Herald-Record, sharing the importance of working across the aisle to support veterans in Upstate New York and across the country.
I’m glad to have a robust Veterans Advisory Committee that I meet with to understand the unique needs of veterans here in NY-19. I’ve worked on a number of bipartisan bills already to support our veterans, including legislation focused on better serving the family of veterans with disabilities and increasing mental health support for veterans.
Read my column: My view: We must ensure veterans fair access to health services.
CONNECT WITH US
I hope you’ll connect with us soon. We’re always here to help, and you can get in touch with us in the following ways:
- Call 202-225-5614
- Reach out online: Delgado.house.gov/contact/email-me
- Visit the Kingston Office at 256 Clinton Avenue (open 9 AM – 5 PM Monday through Friday), visit the Delhi Office at 111 Main Street (open 10 AM – 4 PM Tuesdays and Wednesdays), or visit the Oneonta Office at 189 Main Street #500 (open 10 AM – 4 PM Thursdays and Fridays).
- Come to one of my town halls or public events: Delgado.house.gov/about/events