Access to Affordable Health Care. No Floridian should be denied access to medical care. No family should have to choose between receiving treatment for an illness or bankruptcy, between filling a prescription for life saving drugs or having food to eat. Affordable, quality health care must be available to every citizen in this state regardless of income and regardless of pre-existing conditions.
Fixing health care in Florida is a top priority. For too long, Florida’s health care performance has lagged behind the rest of the country. A recent report comparing health care performance among all 50 states and the District of Columbia ranked Florida 48th in terms of access for low-income Americans, the uninsured, minorities, young children and elderly adults. Politicians should be advocates for expanding access to health care for all. That is why while serving in the Florida House of Representatives, Amanda Murphy worked to sponsor legislation authorizing Medicaid expansion as provided by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. It is also why she will make Medicaid expansion a top priority when elected.
Funding for mental health and substance abuse initiatives is long overdue. With eight years of Republican rule in Tallahassee, Florida’s ranking for mental health funding is among the country’s lowest. Governor Scott allowed over $20 million in annual federal block grants for substance abuse and mental health services to simply expire without filling the funding gap. Vital treatment services were eliminated across the state, leaving mental health and substance abuse providers scrambling to help those Floridians most in need. Pasco and Pinellas were especially hard hit. For individuals struggling with addiction, years of negligence by elected officials helped create the opioid crisis now destroying families and entire communities. Compounding matters is that every time there is a mass shooting, politicians on one side of the aisle put the blame on “mental health” but do little more than that. As a result of the failure of Congress to pass comprehensive mental health care legislation and the continuing pressure to fully repeal the Affordable Care Act, millions of individuals who need mental health services are in even greater jeopardy. Amanda will continue to advocate for fully funded programs to ensure that everyone in our state — children, adolescents and adults — has access to necessary mental health care.