We Can Do Better

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We Can Do Better (formerly known as the Archimedes Movement[1]) (founded 2006) is a grassroots movement based in the U.S. state of Oregon, which aims to bring citizens and stakeholders together to design a health care system that "works better for everyone."[2] It was founded by former Oregon governor John Kitzhaber, M.D. in January 2006.[3] Kitzhaber's goal was to find a way to put money used for health care, which as of 2006 amounted to about $6.3 billion in Oregon, to better use.[4] That year, it was one of three organizations that drew substantially increased funding levels from the Northwest Health Foundation; its grant funds totaled $82,000.[5]

In 2007, members of the organization initially "crowded the steps" of the Oregon Capitol in support of a bill before the 2007 legislature to establish the Oregon Health Trust,[6] but Kitzhaber later reversed his position, pulling his support from the bill and advising members of the organization that the then-current version of the bill did "not reflect the work…done by you through the Archimedes Movement."[7]

The organization's goal was to create a national grass-roots effort to reform health care, starting in Oregon.[8] It was founded on the belief that incremental change to existing health programs like Medicare and Medicaid will not be sufficient to solve their long-term problems, and that communities and coalitions outside the political world would need to form consensus around goals and values, and pressure lawmakers to make more fundamental changes.[3]

The organization's executive director, Liz Baxter, has advocated for health policy reform to members of the Oregon Legislative Assembly.[9] She also chairs the Oregon Health Insurance Exchange Board, established in 2011.[10]

The Archimedes Movement is a member of the Oregon Health Reform Collaborative.[11] The organization's original name was based on the ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes, who is quoted as saying "Give me a lever and a place to stand, and I can move the Earth."[4]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ Bartlett, Amy (January 28, 2011). "Focus on accessible health care". Siuslaw News. 
  2. ^ Brunk, Doug (February 1, 2008). "Movement Seeks Consensus on Health Reform". Skin & Allergy News. 
  3. ^ a b Colby, Ira C.; Catherine N. Dulmus and Karen M. Sowers (January 2013). Connecting Social Welfare Policy to Fields of Practice. pp. 153–154. ISBN 978-1-1184-2096-6. 
  4. ^ a b Christie, Tim (May 26, 2006). "Kitzhaber puts spotlight on health care". The Register-Guard. 
  5. ^ Moody, Robin J. (August 13, 2006). "NW Health Foundation shifts toward reform role". Portland Business Journal. 
  6. ^ Moody, Robin J. (March 18, 2007). "Oregon Health Trust bill could signal big changes: Ex-governor, legislators propose sweeping health reform". Portland Business Journal. 
  7. ^ "Around Town: Kitzhaber ends support for health care reform bill". Portland Business Journal. April 22, 2007. 
  8. ^ Esteve, Harry (April 10, 2010). "Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber touts centrist path he hopes will lead to old job". The Oregonian. 
  9. ^ Kost, Ryan (January 28, 2012). "Woman shares family's stories as she advocates for health care bill". The Oregonian. 
  10. ^ "Governor Kitzhaber Applauds Senate Confirmation of Oregon Health Insurance Exchange Board". Targeted News Service. October 9, 2011. 
  11. ^ oregonhealthreform.org Oregon Health Reform Collaborative web site (as archived January 20, 2009)

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Op-ed by Executive Director Liz Baxter: Baxter, Liz (February 4, 2010). "It's time for Oregonians to start talking about health care". The Register-Guard. 
  • Op-ed by founder John Kitzhaber: Kitzhaber, John (May 21, 2007). "Treat the root cause in reform effort". The Register-Guard. 
  • Op-ed by Community Leadership Council member Michael Grady: Grady, Michael (August 26, 2009). "Health care reform, a sustainable model: 'Medicaid for all'". The Oregonian.