.- As the American health care debate continues, the U.S. Catholic bishops have launched a webpage to promote support for a “truly universal” health policy that respects human dignity.
The page on the website of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) includes letters for bishops to Congress, videos, facts and statistics, frequently asked questions, and links for contacting members of Congress.
According to a USCCB press release, letters to Congress include USCCB pro-life chairman Cardinal Justice Rigali’s August 11 letter which criticized abortion provisions in the House version of health care legislation. The site also reproduces the July 17 letter from Bishop William Murphy, which outlines the bishops’ concerns and priorities for health care reform from a social justice perspective.
The new webpage also includes videos of USCCB staff explaining the bishops’ position on health care. Kathy Saile, the USCCB’s director of Domestic Social Development, outlines the prelates’ general position and concerns. Richard Doerflinger, associate director of Pro-Life Activities, describes how abortion relates to the debate over health care reform.
The website also reports facts and statistics on Catholic health care in the U.S., where there are 624 Catholic hospitals, 164 home health agencies and 41 hospice organizations.
The USCCB’s health care reform web site is at www.usccb.org/healthcare