Health care forum, film set for Dec. 12

Health Care for All-Oregon will be visiting Hood River Dec. 12, 6-8 p.m. at the Hood River Library to discuss the American health care system, how the community can help to heal it, and what drives the current campaign to bring health care justice to all Oregonians.

Join the conversation by attending the film “Sick & Tired of Being Sick & Tired: Health Care is a Human Right.” Learn to tell your story, discover the principles of the Health Care for All-Oregon campaign.

Annually, an estimated 600 Oregonians die because of lack of access to health care. Each month some 1,000 Oregonians, the majority of whom had health insurance, are forced into medical bankruptcy.

“Fixing health care will involve addressing problems of access, cost and quality,” says Bonnie New, a retired physician from Hood River. “The public needs to act in a coordinated way to demand change from our legislators.”

Health care advocates in the Gorge are focusing on ways to support the statewide effort to bring publicly funded universal health care to all Oregon residents.

Proponents will be working with Oregon legislators in the 2013 session to pass legislation enabling universal health care at the state level and eventually at the national level, but the effort will not be easy.

The size and power of the insurance industry lobby is legendary. The struggle will require a strong and determined grassroots movement, with advocates all over the state demanding justice.

Join the conversation by attending “Sick & Tired of Being Sick & Tired: Health Care is a Human Right.” Learn to tell your story, discover the principles of the Health Care for All-Oregon campaign.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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