Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | MARCH 05, 2010 7:30 AM

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Support universal health coverage

I am writing to urge all Americans to write or call their representatives in Congress and register support for universal health care. While the opponents of universal health care have loudly voiced their displeasure, very little evidence has been shown on either side of the debate to support any position.

More than 8 million of the uninsured in the country are children, according to the Children’s Defense Fund. Uninsured children are 10 times more likely to have unmet medical needs than insured children and five times more likely to have gone more than two years without seeing a doctor.

Uninsured children are more than four times as likely as insured children to have unmet dental needs. Uninsured children are more likely to struggle in school, whereas enrolling a child in health coverage correlates to greater scholastic achievement.

One in 14 white children are uninsured, one in nine African-American children are uninsured, and one in five Latino children are uninsured. More than 800,000 pregnant women are uninsured. The infant-mortality rate in the United States ranks 27th out of 30 industrialized nations, a situation directly related to lack of adequate coverage.

We must let our representatives in Congress know that we will not accept this. Again, I urge everyone who reads this to contact your representatives in Congress and let them know that we will not stand by and do nothing while our children suffer.

Scott Downen
East Moline, Ill., resident

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