Leading foundations, donors need to be engaged in health care debate

Tuesday, May 2, 2017 General News
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NCRP brief highlights 7 actions philanthropists can take to protect health equity, even if they aren't health funders

WASHINGTON, May 2, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The GOP is continuing to look for ways to repeal the Affordable Care

Act (ACA). Although it seems to currently lack the votes, ACA isn't out of the woods yet. And neither are Medicaid and Medicare.

NCRP's new brief "Foundations, Donors and Health Policy" is a handy resource for grantmakers and donors who are unsure about whether it should, and if so, how to respond to attempts to reverse recent advances in health equity.

Not just for "health funders"

This new health equity brief by the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP; www.ncrp.org) explores the potential implications of health care changes on health funders and non-health funders.

"Whether or not your giving focuses specifically on health issues, it is likely that the current federal and state policy proposals and debates have implications for your causes and communities," writes Lisa Ranghelli, author of the brief and senior director at NCRP.

The health care issues that could be affected by changes include:

  • Opioid addiction crisis
  • Caregiving for the aging
  • Reproductive health, infant and maternal wellness
  • Mental and behavioral health access
  • Rural access to care and stability of community health centers and hospitals in rural communities
  • Affordable prevention and treatment services for people at risk of or living with HIV/AIDS
  • Services and care for people with disabilities
  • Tribal health services
  • Health support for people in transition from one gender identity to another

Meanwhile, the brief explains how changes to the ACA could also have implications for state social service programs, race and gender equity, economic vitality in local communities and the overall well-being of communities.

"Do you care about people with disabilities? The elderly? Racial equity? Gender equity? Creating jobs?" asks NCRP Vice President and Chief Content Officer Jennifer Choi in a post on NCRP's blog. "Regressive health policies will have an impact on these and other issues."

What can funders do?

Ranghelli provides seven steps funders can take to proactively address these challenges, including increasing the amount and flexibility of funding.

"The most useful thing you can do in this unusual policy moment is free up additional flexible resources for your nonprofit partners to respond," Ranghelli writes.

"Advocacy networks and coalitions need more funding to ramp up their capacity in a range of areas – from constituent engagement to communications. This will enable them to defend existing policies as well as advance new ones."

The other six steps are:

  1. Reach out to the nonprofits you support.
  2. Elevate stories of impact.
  3. Lead with equity.
  4. Use your reputation.
  5. Weight in with policymakers.
  6. Organize within philanthropy.

Now is the time for philanthropy to act

"Foundations, Donors and Health Policy" notes that there is little risk for foundations to take action now, but there is a great risk to remaining on the sidelines.

"The time to ensure your community won't be harmed by federal policies is before they are signed into law – not after," Ranghelli writes. "Also, the flux in federal policy is opening up new challenges and opportunities for state-level reform – ranging from potential additional states expanding Medicaid to others considering a single-payer plan."

The brief is available on www.ncrp.org.

About NCRP

The National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy amplifies the voice of nonprofits and the communities they serve in the philanthropic sector. Through research and advocacy, it works to ensure that grantmakers and donors contribute to the creation of a fair, just and equitable world.


To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/leading-foundations-donors-need-to-be-engaged-in-health-care-debate-300449320.html

SOURCE National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy

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