Theatrical protest group “Billionaires for Wealthcare” has done it again.
During the American Health Insurance Plans’ (AHIP) annual State issues conference in Washington, D.C. on Friday, Wealthcare members infiltrated the group and interrupted health industry pollster Bill McInturff’s speech with cheers of thanks for his “good work.”
However, kind words floating from the back of the room at the Capitol Hilton Hotel quickly turned into a full-blown musical number thanking the insurers for blocking a public health insurance option, set to the tune of “Tomorrow, Tomorrow.”
The group called its performance “Public Option Annie,” a guerrilla musical.
“The groups Health Care for America Now and MoveOn.org also bombarded the health insurance conference, hosted by America’s Health Insurance Plans, with hundreds of protesters and families with stories of being denied care by the insurance companies,” CBS News reported.
Health Care for America Now recently blasted AHIP with a television ad decrying its report that claimed insurance premiums would skyrocket over 100 percent for working families if the Senate Finance Committee’s health reform bill were to pass.
The report was characterized by President Barack Obama as “bogus” and became the target of ire among congressional Democrats, who suggested that it actually provided a major reason to support the public option as a way of injecting market competition and keeping rates on private plans down.
AHIP did not respond to a request for comment by CBS News.
This video was published to YouTube by BillsForWealthcare on Oct. 23, 2009.
Privacy rights may become next victim of killer pandemic
Digital surveillance and smartphone technology may prove helpful in containing the coronavirus pandemic -- but some activists fear this could mean lasting harm to privacy and digital rights.
From China to Singapore to Israel, governments have ordered electronic monitoring of their citizens' movements in an effort to limit contagion. In Europe and the United States, technology firms have begun sharing "anonymized" smartphone data to better track the outbreak.
These moves have prompted soul-searching by privacy activists who acknowledge the need for technology to save lives while fretting over the potential for abuse.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards honors staffer who died from COVID-19
Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-LA) offered a moving tribute to a member of his staff who died from COVID-19.
"On behalf of the first lady and my entire administration, it is with heavy hearts that we mourn the loss of our dear April, who succumbed to complications from COVID-19," he posted on Twitter, along with photos.
"She brightened everyone’s day with her smile and was an inspiration to everyone who met her," he continued.
"She lived her life to the fullest and improved the lives of countless Louisianans with disabilities as a dedicated staff member in the Governor's Office of Disability Affairs. April worked hard as an advocate for herself & other members of the disability community," he wrote.
Washington state nurses share shocking stories from their war against coronavirus
by Ken Armstrong and Vianna Davila
Nurses at one hospital in southeastern Washington state have alleged that, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, they were ordered by supervisors to use one protective mask per shift, potentially exposing themselves to the novel coronavirus.
At another hospital, just east of Seattle, nurses had to use face shields indefinitely.
At a third hospital, on Washington’s border with Oregon, nurses reported that respirators were expired. The hospital responded, the nurses said, by ordering staff to remove stickers showing that the respirators might be as much as three years out of date.