Wednesday, April 14, 2010

NASW News from the Hill: Social Work & the Health Care Reform Law

Professional Social Worker Services in Health Care Reform
Wondering what's in the new health care reform law to advance the social work profession? NASW recently released a very popular briefing on the various ways the new law will directly impact the social work profession. Interested social workers may view it here

.White House Provides Resources on Health Care Reform Law
The White House website offers a wide array of materials to explain the new federal health care reform law and its impact on consumers, providers, businesses and payers. You may find these resources helpful as you seek reliable information and explanations of the complex new law. Social workers that wish to learn more about the law in easily understood briefing sheets should see the White House website here.

Time is Running Out! Reinvest in the Profession.
With less than 60 days left in the Congressional calendar, we are running out of time in the 111th Congress to pass the Dorothy I. Height and Whitney M. Young, Jr. Social Work Reinvestment Act (H.R. 795/S. 686). Contact your Representative and Senators TODAY in support of this bill. We really need your help if you are represented by any members of the House Committee on Education and Labor. We already have 83 cosponsors in the House and 12 in the Senate but if we are unsuccessful in passing this bill, we will have to start over in the 112th Congress.

Congressman Towns Contacts President Obama and Secretary Sebelius in Support of Social Work
The lead sponsor of the Dorothy I. Height and Whitney M. Young, Jr. Social Work Reinvestment Act, Congressman and social worker Ed Towns (D-NY) sent a letter to the President and Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) urging them to establish a Social Work Reinvestment Commission within the HHS. Rep. Towns says that, "social workers are a key resource for the nation's most vulnerable populations including older adults, children, the impoverished, veterans, and people at risk for disparate health and behavioral health services access." He goes on to state that workforce challenges are preventing our profession from recruiting and retaining enough social workers to keep pace with the increasing demand for our services. Rep. Towns states that, "The federal government has previously invested in comparable professions such as nursing and teaching when faced with workforce shortages. We now much focus on social work by establishing this Commission..." NASW thanks Rep. Towns for his unwavering support of the profession.

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