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From the President's Desk


Moving Forward

by Ronnie Shure, President
Winter/Spring 2024

Isaac Newton said, “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” I have found strength and comfort in those words since I am so short. I was tall enough to play on my 6th grade basketball team. However, everyone in my class got taller that summer. Being left-handed, I had an unexpected hook shot, but the next year I found myself watching basketball from the bleachers. I quickly learned to find other fields to play in as I find purpose and value in my life. I stood on the shoulders of friends and family and leaders in our community to learn those lessons.

Nowadays I am playing in the field of healthcare advocacy, working to achieve universal health care. The gold standard for this field is single-payer. Many advocates have been leading the pathway to that goal, and I find strength and comfort standing on the shoulders of their accomplishments. We have different strategies about the best pathway to get there --- focus only on the gold standard, focus on ways to overcome the barriers that prevent progress, focus on incremental steps to improve our current system, or focus on the sociopolitical determinants that determine our health. There are many groups participating in this struggle, and each group is adding value as we move forward to achieve our goal. I am constantly learning to include different strategies from other healthcare advocates, and I am finding value by standing on the shoulder of these giants.

Health Care for All – Washington focuses on building relationships with legislators and government leaders. Our lobbyist, Lonnie Johns-Brown, has been opening the doors for us to suggest plans and to study different pathways to universal coverage. Our members have been making connections with legislators across the state, and we have urged government leaders to find solutions to healthcare inequities. The co-chairs and active members of our committees are identifying communication strategies, key policy issues, and outreach actions. We are continuing to improve our healthcare system despite the barriers that delay the achievement of that gold standard of single-payer.

We need your help. You can consult with our committee leaders about a specific idea, so you do not have to join a committee and meet regularly. You can volunteer to organize an action team in your legislative district or an action team for one specific issue. Healthcare advocacy is a team sport, please participate to help us move forward.

View prior reports From the President's Desk.