Medicaid Cuts Could Leave Millions of Blacks and Latinos With Serious Health Conditions at Risk

Major Health, Civil Rights, and Consumer Groups to Spotlight Vital Importance of Medicaid to Protect the Health and Lives of Millions of Blacks and Latinos

New Report Will Detail Number of Blacks and Latinos by State with Cancer, Heart Disease, Stroke, Diabetes, and Chronic Lung Disease Who Depend on Medicaid for Treatment

Washington, D.C. (October 7, 2011)

Cuts to Medicaid, an option the new congressional “super committee” may consider, could pose a specific and dangerous threat to millions of blacks and Latinos nationwide who depend on the program for regular treatment of such medical conditions as cancer, diabetes, chronic lung disease, heart disease, and stroke. Medicaid’s critical role in providing access to blacks and Latinos, coupled with the heavy burden of chronic disease borne by these groups, means that Medicaid coverage is an essential lifeline for many of these seriously-ill Americans.

On Thursday, October 13, 2011, a new report will be released detailing the importance of Medicaid for black and Latino families struggling with major life threatening conditions. The report will be released jointly by the American Diabetes Association, the American Lung Association, the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies Health Policy Institute, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the National Medical Association, the National Urban League Policy Institute, and Families USA.

The groups will outline their concerns about—and objections to—cuts to the Medicaid program, which could leave millions of blacks and Latinos without access to doctors’ visits, medications and treatments, or hospital care when they need it the most.

The report will provide state-specific information on the number of blacks and Latinos who rely on Medicaid for treatment of:

  • cancer,
  • diabetes,
  • chronic lung diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cystic fibrosis, and
  • heart disease or stroke.

A teleconference will be held on Thursday, October 13, 2011, to discuss the new Medicaid report.

WHAT:

Teleconference and Release of Report, “Medicaid: A Lifeline for Blacks and Latinos with Serious Health Care Needs”

WHEN:

1 p.m. EDT, 12 p.m. CDT, 11 a.m. MDT, 10 a.m. PDT, Thursday, October 13, 2011

HOW:

Dial in toll-free: 888-710-4016; Confirmation code: 2043236

WHO:

  • Hilary Shelton, Washington Bureau Director and Senior VP for Advocacy and Policy, NAACP
  • Jennifer Ng’andu, Deputy Director, Health Policy Project, NCLR
  • Cedric M. Bright, M.D., President, National Medical Association
  • Chanelle Hardy, Senior Vice President for Policy and Executive Director, National Urban League Policy Institute
  • Ron Pollack, Executive Director, Families USA