Maloney, Payne, Jr. Introduce Legislation to Declare August National Health Care Awareness Month

Aug 17, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) and Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. (D-NJ) today introduced a resolution to designate August as National Health Care Awareness Month. This designation would bring attention to all the ways in which health care affects all Americans – as a nation and as individuals. 


Currently, approximately 32.8 million people under the age of 65 and approximately 4.4 million children are uninsured– with individuals of color at a higher risk of lacking insurance. 


“Health care impacts all aspects of our lives – and a lack of accessible, affordable health care only serves to exacerbate already existing disparities and inequities in our communities,” said Congresswoman Maloney. “National Health Care Awareness Month is meant to help us inform the American people on the importance of health care, lift up the voices of patient and health care advocates, and place a national spotlight on the need for Congress to act to ensure that all Americans have access to affordable, quality comprehensive healthcare. Health care is a human right, and our policies must reflect that.”


“Americans are suffering and dying needlessly because they don’t take their health and wellness seriously,” said Congressman Payne, Jr. “It is common for people to put off regular physicals and health screenings because they feel healthy.  But this global pandemic has taught us that you must be vigilant and always take your health seriously.  I am proud to introduce this resolution with Rep. Maloney because we have to get more Americans to take their health seriously at all times, get screened for health issues earlier, and save lives.”


Original cosponsors of the resolution include Representatives Thomas Suozzi (D-NY), Adriano Espaillat (D-NY), Nikema Williams (D-GA), Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-CA), Alma Adams (D-NC), Juan Vargas (D-CA), André Carson (D-IN), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Brian Higgins (D-NY), Danny Davis (D-IL), Lucy McBath (D-GA), Ritchie Torres (D-NY), Andy Levin (D-MI), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Mary Gay Scanlon (D-PA), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Dwight Evans (D-PA), and Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC).


The resolution is endorsed by DemCast USA, patient advocate Peter Morley, Voters of Tomorrow,, Patients Rising, The Democratic Coalition, Survivor Corps, Vote Mama Foundation, OneMillionOfUS, and Families USA.


“DemCast USA fully endorses the House Resolution seeking to designate August as Health Care Awareness Month. Our members believe that healthcare is a human right and quality care should be affordable and accessible. Designating August as a month of education and advocacy will help move policy forward to achieve these goals,” said Lori Coleman, Cofounder, DemCast USA.


"For the past four years, I've been sharing health care stories with Congress from tens of thousands of constituents, advocating for the health care of millions of Americans. To have a team of people helping me spotlight all the tireless Congressmembers and advocates who came together to make August Health Care Awareness Month is an honor and I am truly grateful to every advocate and member of Congress who has signed on to take this important step in recognizing this month at the National Level," said Peter Morley, Patient Advocate and Co-Founder, Health Care Awareness Month


“By making each August National Health Care Awareness Month, Voters of Tomorrow hopes to see health care be understood as a human right, and not just a privilege of the wealthy. Far too many young people do not have adequate insurance and, by codifying August as National Health Care Awareness Month, we can make greater efforts to show young Americans how they can access health care at an affordable price. Although it is not the solution, this is a step in the right direction to ensuring health care is available to every American, regardless of socioeconomic status," said Jackson Hurley, Political Director, Voters of Tomorrow.


“The Democratic Coalition is proud to support the House Bill naming August Health Care Awareness Month. We must do everything we can to help guide others through our unjust healthcare system, to ensure they receive the best care and benefits available to them.” Scott Dworkin, Co-Founder, The Democratic Coalition.


“This pandemic has reinforced how critical access to quality healthcare is for all Americans. And as we see the numbers of those living with Long Covid increase it is vital that health care access and health care equity be reinforced and protected for all, regardless of race, religion, economic status or geography.” Diana Berrent, Founder, Survivor Corps. 


"Vote Mama Foundation proudly endorses this resolution. We are breaking barriers moms face while running for office, normalizing moms running for office with young children, and enabling legislators to pass family friendly legislation. We believe that every person should have access to the health care literacy needed to advocate for their and their families' health care needs. The designation of the month of August as National Health Care Awareness Month gets us one step closer to a more empowered society." Liuba Grechen Shirley, Founder and CEO of Vote Mama Foundation.


“Ensuring everyone who lives in America has access to high-quality, affordable health care is a fundamental part of building a country where everyone can succeed regardless of the color of their skin, language they speak, where they were born or how they identify,” said Jen Taylor, Senior Director of Federal Relations at Families USA. “Recognizing August as National Health Care Awareness Month will bring attention to how important health care is to our lives both individually and collectively and Families USA applauds Representatives Maloney and Payne for introducing this resolution.”


Full text of the resolution can be found here.