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Rosalynn Carter on the Affordable Care Act (C-SPAN) – W/Evaluation Form

Rosalynn Carter on the Affordable Care Act (C-SPAN)

NCA Eval

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Analysis Essay

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Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter talks about the Affordable Care Act in an exclusive interview with C-SPAN for its First Ladies series. More information here: http://cs.pn/1bNqH35

“But we toured the country, found out what was needed, developed legislation and passed the Mental Health Systems Act of 1980. It passed through Congress one month before Jimmy, as he says was, involuntarily retired from the White House and the incoming president put it on the shelf. Never implemented it. It was one of the greatest disappointments of my life.

And now, we had a mental health symposium here at the Carter Center. I have a great mental health program here, last week, and one of the people who worked with me in the White House, the program – the subject was the Affordable Care Act and he did a comparison of what we did in 1980 with what we – what the Affordable Care Act.

It is almost identical. We just passed parity. It was announced here, the final regulations. I had parity in the 1980 Mental Health Systems Act. I mean, it’s really – things don’t move very fast in the mental health field, but I’m so thrilled now that we have parity and that we have a full Affordable Care Act, covers parity, and we also had immigration in the 1980 legislation by combining mental health and substance abuse, behavioral help.”

She continues “…like with the Affordable Care Act, I was so confused by the time we had our meeting last week, that – we had people here who really knew what was in the law, which was so good for us.

And then to have the parity regulation, that was – we found out the day before Kathleen Sebelius came that she was going to announce the final regulations, which I had been talking to. Passed the law in 2008 and I had been talking to her about it.

She’s a good friend. Her father was governor when Jimmy was governor. Her mother’s a good friend and I’ve been talking to get the regulations out and I am sure her hands were tied by the White House because I think they wanted it in the Affordable Care Act.

But then for her to come here and announce it, as soon as I heard it, I started shaking, you know? I mean, this is 33 years after I called – I had wanted it, so it was exciting. It was emotional.”

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Written by Alexandra Jones

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