A Guide to the
Health-Care Reform Debate
PICO and SOJOURNERS have joined forces to provide you with this toolkit
on the current health-care reform debate. It is designed to educate and spark
discussion and thought about how to live out God’s call for justice in our world.
This guide includes biblical background, a status update on the state of U.S.
health care, a look at past attempts at health-care reform, a helpful guide for
understanding all the terms, options, and key choices in the current debate, a
look at the role of the faith community and what values can shape our health-
care decisions, plus a list of what you and your community can do to promote
health-care reform that makes coverage more affordable to families and serves
the common good. We recommend printing out the guide for each person in
your discussion group and allowing everyone time to read before the group
meets. The resources here are a starting point for a further journey—where will
the Spirit lead your group?
A special thanks to Faith in Public Life and Catholics in Alliance for the Common
Good for their support and assistance in creating this guide.
the key issues
—Ronald J. Sider,
for Social Action
A Guide to the Health-Care Reform Debate
SOJOURNERS/www.sojo.net • PICO/www.piconetwork.org
A Biblical Promise
of Health and
MOSt RElIGIOUS COMMUNItIES in America are engaged in ministries
that care for the sick and alleviate the pain of poverty. Yet skyrocketing costs are
now endangering access to health care for Americans from all walks of life. Even
families that were once secure with health coverage are finding they cannot keep
up with the cost of rising premiums and deductibles. According to the Institute
of Medicine, 18,000 people in our nation still die each year unnecessarily because
they lack affordable heal