At an event today in Cleveland, health care leaders and patients urged the U.S. Senate to protect affordable and adequate health coverage for patients as the health debate continues in Washington, D.C. “I can tell you from my experience as a practicing physician and as a physician involved in population health [that] coverage – or the lack of coverage – has real and serious implications for our patients’ health,” said James Misak, M.D., vice chair of community and population health for Cleveland-based MetroHealth System, noting that patients who have gained coverage under the state’s Medicaid expansion report “an increased ability to work, better identification and treatment of chronic physical and mental health conditions, and less family financial stress. This is exactly what health insurance is supposed to do…It is for all of these reasons that we call on the Senate to reset the discussion, to revise or reject the [American Health Care Act] proposal and protect health coverage.” The event was organized by the AHA, AARP, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association, American Medical Association, Federation of American Hospitals, and March of Dimes. Similar events are planned in Colorado, Nevada and West Virginia.