It was a horrible year. For Republicans not named Chris Brown. If you’re a Democrat, you probably thought 2017 was great.
There is no greater honor that any of us can receive than to be acknowledged for our service to our community. In fact, there is no greater reward in life in my opinion than that of service to your fellow man. And today, as all of you know, there is no greater need in our society than to be of service to one another.
Many consider Thanksgiving the best holiday of all because it is so inclusive and excludes no one. In its simplest form, all you have to do is say thanks for what you have. However, this year, I’d like you to consider a slightly different approach to Thanksgiving. It’s that extra step that touches someone else and speaks volumes about you.
The stark truth is that there is no cure for diabetes. However, unlike some diseases, diabetes is controllable. And not only is it treatable, but it is also a disease that you can have significant control over if you commit to a lifestyle change. Virtually all experts agree that if you take the time to become educated about the disease and manage it with diet, exercise and possibly medication, you can improve the quality of your life.
In honor of National Hospice & Palliative Care Month, Chief Medical Officer Stephen Goldfine, MD of Samaritan Healthcare & Hospice shares his valuable insights on this ever important facet of healthcare. We must honor the quality of life of every individual, just as we should honor those professionals that provide exceptional service everyday. To quote Dr. Goldfine: "Hospice is not a place – it’s high-quality care that focuses on physical, emotional, and spiritual comfort and the best quality of life during advanced illness."
Voting is the essence of a democracy. Our country was founded on the principles of democratic participation that guaranteed the right of all citizens to have a role in shaping their government. Though for most our country’s existence, it failed to deliver on those guarantees, especially for women and minorities. That said, our imperfect union can only function at its best when its citizens are active participants.
As we continue to think about how best to prepare our current and future workforce for the opportunities that will present themselves, we have to look at how we can and should synergize the offerings at our institutions of higher education and our workforce development goals.
One of the most gut-wrenching and sobering moments of my time as a legislator happened to me a few months ago when I visited one of our district’s senior day programs. I sat in with some of my bosses and listened as many talked about how the escalating price of prescription drugs was forcing them to make a Hobson’s choice between paying for their medicines or going without. Now, we all know that prescription drug prices in our country are rising at an unprecedented and unsustainable rate. And, the numbers as to how bad it’s gotten are staggering.
You can count the numbers, and they are staggering. And the pain is immeasurable.
Currently, one in four women experience domestic violence at the hands of an intimate partner in our country. That’s two times higher than the incidence of breast cancer. Of those affected women, three are murdered every single day in a domestic violence homicide. Because batterers tend to isolate their female partners from family, friends and services, a visit to the doctor’s office, health clinic or emergency department may be one of the few times a woman meets professionals in a confidential setting. Guidelines created under the Affordable Care Act provided an opportunity to integrate domestic violence into our health care system by requiring health plans to fully cover screening and counseling as a standard element of women’s preventative services.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This issue has touched the lives of so many that I know personally. And, as an elected official, I am well aware that the decisions we make in public policy influences every aspect of how we combat this disease. From increasing the amount of breast cancer research funding to ensuring better access to treatment, federal and state officials play a key role in eradicating breast cancer.