I joined patients and nurses at a protest this morning outside the Ritz-Carlton, while health insurance executives gathered inside and plotted how to make sure private health insurance companies can keep gouging patients in any health care reform to come out of Congress this year. Our message: patients before profits.
I just figured out how to upload videos from my cell phone, so now you can watch some of the protest here:
Or see Geri Jenkins and Donna Smith of the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee’s with the award they were barred from delivering that named Karen Ignagni (CEO of the health insurers’ lobbying arm) "Best Protector of Profits at the Expense of Our Health."
Speaking at the health insurers’ conference tomorrow is Sen. Orrin Hatch, 9th largest recipient of health insurer dollars according to the campaign contribution analysis Consumer Watchdog released yesterday. Health insurers and the pharmaceutical industry gave $24 million to Congress since 2005. That’s 24 million reasons for the American people to be concerned that health insurers will be given a seat at the table while patients are left out in the cold.