This week we learned Clay County’s Cumberland River Hospital would be shutting its doors, making it the 13th rural Tennessee hospital to shutter since the Republican refusal to expand Medicaid took hold.
The numbers show rural hospital closures are far more common in states that refuse to expand Medicaid. Hospitals in Medicaid expansion states were 84 percent less likely to face hospital closures than their peers in non-expansion states, a new Health Affairs study shows.
As part of a #WeAreCelina Day of Action yesterday, in solidarity with Celina and Clay County, Democratic officials Rep. John Ray Clemmons, Rep. London Lamar, Rep. Mike Stewart, Rep, Gloria Johnson and Rep. Dwayne Thompson held a press conference at the capitol, where they were joined by Tennessee Democratic Party Chair Mary Mancini and cancer survivor/Medicaid recipient Kelly Gregory.
Gregory gave an emotional presentation, and all 5 Democratic reps called on Governor Lee and the Republicans to put politics aside and accept the federal dollars to expand Medicaid as the previous Republican Governor wanted to, pointing out that every year that goes by Tennessee loses billions of dollars – $26 Billion over a decade, in fact – and more people will die unnecessarily as hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans are left without health insurance.
Below is video from the press conference:
Last week yet another of Tennessee’s rural hospitals announced it would be closing its doors, bringing the total up to a dozen – the most per capita of any state in the country.
This time it’s Clay County’s Cumberland River Hospital falling on hard times.
Our friends at Think Tennessee have just put out their yearly breakdown of where Tennessee stacks up with the other states on important things like opioid prescriptions (49th), poverty (41st), education funding (45th), Adult diabetes (45th), infant mortality (47th), mental health providers (45th) life expectancy (44th), and much more.
Some people are doing very well in our state, but on the whole the news is really not very good. We’re unhealthy, there’s a lot of poverty, our education is underfunded, and the jobs – although we have them – don’t pay well.
We deeply appreciate that Think Tennessee does this, and have made a video out of what they’ve found. If you enjoy it, feel free to share on Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, or anywhere else you spend your time.
Yesterday’s News Channel 5 broadcast contained a powerful segment about the hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans stuck in the “coverage gap” thanks to the TN GOP’s refusal to expand medicaid, which has cost our state $6 Billion and counting and helped us lead the country in rural hospital closures per capita. Read more
Yesterday a group of students gathered at the capital to ask Governor Lee to remove the statue of Nathan Bedford Forrest, a confederate general who also has the distinction of being the first ever KKK Grand Wizard.
Watch and Share the Video Here:
“We come in peace and love… we’re tired of being tired.” – Jeneisha Harris, TSU
The bust is featured prominently in the lobby outside the state legislature. The students are not the first to protest it, and they won’t be the last.
The young Tennesseans came from all over the state to make their voices heard, leaving letters expressing their feelings on the floor outside the Governor’s office and stopping to pray in front of the state troopers who stood guard outside the governor’s office
As Justin Jones of Vanderbilt Divinity School says, history isn’t just something we read about in history books, history is going on every day. If you agree with these brave kids and what they’re doing, HOLLER at Governor Lee HERE.
And please watch and share the video above, footage courtesy of WZTV.
On MLK Day, Governor Lee decided to pay his respects by going to Tennessee State and sharing the stage with Reverend Barber.
Now we’re guessing he probably wishes he hadn’t.
Lee was the first Tennessee Governor to show up at the event in 30 years, and it seems that was no coincidence. Barber made the most of the occasion, making it clear that politicians who claim to love MLK but fight against what he actually stood for will no longer get a free pass on his watch.
Check out the amazingness in a glorious thread here.
Yesterday @RevDrBarber called out Governor @BillLeeTN & anyone who claims to love MLK but fight his agenda and hurt poor people.— Justin Kanew (@Kanew) January 22, 2019
Everyone should see it, so here's a THREAD. I encourage you to WATCH & SHARE them all.
Let's start with Barber calling out Lee to his face. 🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/hrtar2PXQX
After clearing the deck for Bredesen last time around, Iraq War veteran/attorney James Mackler is back in the senate race – this time running for Lamar Alexander’s soon-to-be-open seat. James deserves a lot of credit for putting the country first and getting out when he did last time around, and this early entry should give him a boost by the time 2020 rolls around.
Check out Mackler’s new video below, and go to his site to learn more.