Editor: Lawmakers are charged with trying to create solutions to the problems facing our communities. A critical ongoing challenge for many people is the lack of access to adequate insurance and affordable healthcare. Too many people continue to forego the essential services they need to get and stay healthy or care for their families because they are not covered – or at least not fully – and they can’t afford to pay for them out of pocket without being pushed even further into debt and the cycle of poverty.

We can do more and do better. One step we should take is to develop a strong set of standards around the care that should be included in any health plan – a model or standardized plan. The goal would be to improve coverage and bring down costs through greater competition in insurance markets.

This is something the legislature is considering this year through a bill to develop a strong public option to strengthen our health system and ensure that undocumented people are not left behind.

I am so grateful to see this innovative approach to improving our health systems and closing the gaps. I hope that people will join me in reaching out to their lawmakers to show support for House Bill 1232.

— Brenda Negrete, via letters@sentinelcolorado.com