Every day firefighters go to work not knowing what the day will bring, but they do know that the majority of calls they respond to will be for emergency medical events.
That firsthand experience offers firefighters unique insight into how health care policy affects the people we serve. We’ve been witness to the progress we’ve made with implementation of the Affordable Care Act, but we know there is more to do to ensure every American has access to affordable coverage and high-quality care. The Affordable Care Act, as well as expansions of the Medicare and Medicaid programs, have allowed many more people to be covered. In 2012, Washington state had an uninsured rate of 14.5 percent. Thanks to the ACA and the state of Washington’s effective implementation of the law, that rate dropped to 6.1 percent in 2017. Still, we have more to do to provide more Americans the affordable choices in health care they deserve.