By JACKIE BOSCHOK
(July 21, 2015) — Medicare is our most successful health care program. For nearly 50 years it has given seniors the ability to see a doctor and fill a prescription, keeping them out of poverty.
TAKE A STAND — The Washington Alliance for Retired Americans is hosting a “Celebrate Medicare’s 50th Birthday Open House” at Spokane Community College on Thursday, July 30 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Download and post the event flier. Please RSVP at our Facebook event page or at the Alliance for Retired Americans dedicated website — www.Medicare50th.org — where you also can tell your personal story about how Medicare has helped you.
In 1960, supporters of a national health care system for the aged established “Senior Citizens for Kennedy” to help John Fitzgerald Kennedy develop policy proposals for what would become Medicare. The group was later reorganized in 1961 to become the National Council of Senior Citizens, the predecessor of the Alliance for Retired Americans (ARA).
Nationally, the ARA is leading the charge to celebrate Medicare’s 50th birthday in 2015!
We are hosting almost 90 events to celebrate Medicare’s 50th and Social Security’s 80th birthday around the country. These celebrations present opportunities to reach out and ensure our message of strengthening Medicare is heard. The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a direct threat to drug prices for Medicare beneficiaries, and the tired cries to end Medicare’s guarantee in Rep. Paul Ryan budget provides us with the opportunity to continue to fight to defend it while celebrating its importance.
Jackie Boschok is President of the Washington State Alliance for Retired Americans and serves of the Executive Board of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO.