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Labor Movement and National Health Policy: Some Historical Perspective

David Jacobs, PhD, Hood College, 401 Rosemont Avenue, Frederick, MD 21701-8575, 202/431-6122, jacobsd@hood.edu

The American labor movement, like union movements around the world, has long viewed access to health care as a matter of right. An underlying principle of unionism is that collective action and social provision may be prerequisite to individual prosperity. While trade unions may focus on improvements in wages and benefits for their members, many unions have also placed considerable emphasis on the extension of health care to the many. Medicare and Medicaid could not have been enacted without labor's support. The labor movement made a critical contribution to the development of group health organizations, the first non-profit prepaid health plans. Today, unions remain in the leadership of the campaign for universal health insurance.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, the participant will

Keywords: Labor,

Related Web page: jacobs.home.netcom.com

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The Labor Movement and National Health Policy

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA