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Welcome to Maine AllCare Chapters

Our goal is to make health care accessible to everyone in Maine. Chapters work at the local level, informing and educating our neighbors about the need to transform our current, cumbersome and increasingly costly insurance based system into a statewide, publicly funded universal health care system. We do this through community health forums, guided discussions, film screenings and similar community sponsored events. We currently have four active chapters around the state. Our monthly meetings are open to the public. Please join us. Everyone welcome.

Portland Chapter: Leader – Dan Bryant MD, Contact: dacabr@aol.com
Meets 4th Wednesday of each month 7- 8:30 PM at Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church, 524 Allen Avenue, Portland, ME

Midcoast Chapter – Brunswick: Leader – Bill Clark MD, Contact: wdclark@gwi.net
Meets each month, but no set schedule, 5:30-7:00 PM at Universal Unitarian Church, 1 Middle Street Brunswick ME Please see our Calendar to confirm upcoming meetings.

River Valley Chapter – Rumford: Leader – Joe Sirois, Contact: jnsirois@roadrunner.com
Meets each month, but no set schedule, 4-5:30 PM at the Rumford Public Library, 56 Rumford Ave, Rumford, ME 04276 Please see our Calendar to confirm upcoming meetings.

Downeast Chapter – Blue Hill: Leader – Joe Lendvai, Contact: jlendvai@maineallcare.org
Meets fourth Sunday of each month 4-5:30 PM at the Blue Hill Library, 52 Parker Point Road Blue Hill ME 04614

Bangor Chapter – Bangor: Leader Nate Shea, Contact: nateshea78@gmail.com
Meets second Saturday of each month 8:30-9:30 AM at Bagel Central, upstairs meeting room, 33 Central St, Bangor, ME 04401

Ellsworth /MDI Chapter: Leader Bruce Becque, RN, Contact: nursebecque@gmail.com
Meets once a month on Sundays at the Moore Center in Ellsworth.

 

Recent Meeting Minutes (abbreviated)

DOWNEAST CHAPTER

April 23, 2017 meeting, 3-4:30 pm, Howard Room, Blue Hill Library – Minutes

Submitted by Liz Solet, Secretary, 16 people attending

Introduced new members: Cathleen London MD, Milbridge; Maureen Foy RN, Penobscot
Approved February and March minutes

Announcements:

– New Ellsworth / MDI Chapter first meeting Sunday, April 20th 1pm at Moore Center in Ellsworth
– Elected new Downeast Chapter officers: Lynn Cheney, Leader; Joe Lendvai will provide support as needed, Liz Solet, Secretary; Jeff Milliken MD, Events Coordinator; Tom Van Buren, Publicity.
Education Committee update: discussed “tool kit” created by Jeff Milliken; also, how to engage local business; connect w Rotary. Joined local Chamber of Commerce.

Events: – St. Brendan’s church event (April 25, 6:30 pm, Tom Van Buren organizing)
– Fix It showing at Dorcas Library, Prospect Harbor (April 29, 3 pm): Moderated discussion with Joe Lendvai, Cat London, Bruce Becque.
– Hearing for LD 1274 (May 4, Augusta)
– Healthy Island project May 9th 7:30 am Stonington Church of the Nazarene
– Maine State Nursing conference (May 12-13, Bar Harbor): Bruce Becque will set up and staff table with sign-up list, any educational materials.

Discussion: – Doctors for America—Dr. Cathleen London is involved
– Need info on yellow information cards from our area - Lynn will contact Board
– Bruce and Holly of new Ellsworth /MDI Chapter will continue to attend Downeast Chapter for coordination – Use bcc for mass chapter-wide emails

Next meeting: Sunday May 21, 4-5:30 pm, Blue Hill Library, Howard Room
NOTE: time change to start at 4 p.m.

 

RIVER VALLEY CHAPTER

Thursday, October 6, 2016 at the Rumford Library

Chapter leader Joe Sirois opened the meeting at 4:30. Six members in attendance.

Upcoming events will be the showing of The HealthCare Movie. Members approved a poster and discussed possibilities for 3 viewing sites. More to follow through email and at a future meeting.

Joe reported that he had staffed a table in the Social Responsibility tent at the Common Ground Fair, as we have for the last 3 years. He also handed out recent news items on single-payer health-care efforts that are in progress throughout the country.

Next meeting will be announced as need arises. In the meantime we will communicate by email about dates and times for the showing of the movie. Adjournment at 5:00.

Respectfully submitted, Anne Wood

 

BANGOR CHAPTER

Saturday, March 18, 2017 at Bagel Central

Maine AllCare Bangor Chapter held its first organizing meeting on March 18th, 2017. The initial group of 11 attendees included Debbie Atwood, the Maine AllCare Board Chapter coordinator. We have a new Facebook page.

The Chapter elected the following officers:

  • Nate Shea, Chapter Leader email: nateshea78@gmail.com
  • Jeff Graham, Secretary
  • Andrew Sarto, Treasurer
  • Fredrick Smith, Programs Director
  • Tim Burns, HOPE Festival organization & signs

Next meeting: May 13th 8:30 AM at Bagel Central, upstairs meeting room, 33 Central St, Bangor, ME 04401

 

ELLSWORTH/MDI CHAPTER

Sunday, April 30, 2017 at the Moore Center, 133 State St, Ellsworth, Maine

Present: Bruce Becque, RN; John Pickles, RN; Jack Russell; Jim Mroch; Dr. Moira O’Neill, RN; Dr. Cathleen London; Weronika Grabowska; Dr. Kathleen Kotas; Dr. Mary Dudzik; Jean Rohrer, RN; Valerie Dornan; Holly Duesenberry; Dr. Jeff Dunn; Dr. Linda Dunn; Julia Ventresco; Dr. Meryl Nass; Dr. Sam Bergman; Dr. Charles Hendricks; Dr. David Painter

  1. Introductions made around the table
  2. Moira O’Neill - explanation of Physicians for a National Health Plan and Maine AllCare
  3. Free ranging discussion about the current state of healthcare in the USA - mostly how amazingly dysfunctional it is, clinically as well as financially.
  4. How will we pay for universal coverage?
  5. How will Ellsworth/MDI engage with the wider public? How do we develop a unified message?

Plan going forward:

  1. Ellsworth/MDI will meet on a monthly basis. Next meeting will be on Sunday, May 21, 2017 at 4pm in the Moore Center again. We intend to alternate meeting sites between MDI and Ellsworth. Where can we meet on MDI?
  2. We decided that we first need to educate ourselves on these issues in order to develop a consistent message and talking points to share with the public. Bruce B. will email the group with suggested topics for research. Members can pick areas of interest, do research and present to group.

MIDCOAST CHAPTER

Monday, April 26, 2017, 7pm, Unitarian Universalist Church, Brunswick

Bill Clark (Chapter leader) and 16 others were present

LD 1274 Rally and Hearing on May 4th: Discussion and recruitment. 7 people plan to rally, and 4-5 to testify.

Chapter jobs: We have a scribe, Marla D agreed to help coordinate house parties, and Sydney A expressed a desire to be trained in data entry.

Partners: Bill and Marla talked about their positive visit with CEO of Midcoast Hospital. Now You’re Cooking (Bath) signed up.

Recent events: we showed “Now Is The Time” at First Parish Church (30 people) and at Patten Free Library (Sagadahoc Dems) (50 people and we got good press coverage in the TR).

  • The HCHR Coalition hosted a people’s forum in Portland. We heard good stories and 6 state Representatives/ Senators made brief statements in support of ”Healthcare as a Human Right.”
  • Both the Brunswick Democrats and the Windam democrats held panels on healthcare. Several chapter members attended in Brunswick; MAC board member Phil Caper, M.D. made a presentation in Windham. Here is the link to Phil’s remarks (worth the 10 minute watch): https://vimeo.com/213145636. (If you wish to just watch Phil’s talk it is at 1:24-1:33 on the counter)
    Coming events: the “Fixit” movie will be shown at a nonpartisan Townhall in Rockland, May 17.
  • Check the MAC website calendar for events that other chapters are planning.
  • MAC board: the board is interviewing and plans to hire an organizer in the very near future.

Several questions and comments:

  • What would happen to Medicare in LD 1274? Medicare beneficiaries would continue to be served by Medicare. If people wish to continue / buy a Medicare advantage plan, they could do that through the new plan.
  • What are house parties for? More about finding supporters than about raising money, at present.
  • Terry noted that the rising costs and outrageous inequalities in the system are attracting interest in single-payer among conservatives, and Charlie noted that the “SP circle is closing from the other side.”
  • Elisabeth Rosenthal, MD ’s 2017 book, ”An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back" (paperback) was mentioned as a comprehensive resource on current USA healthcare problems. And, see her NYT article (on drug prices, etc), at this link: Rosenthal article NYT 3.29.17.
  • Jean mentioned that If you are thinking about giving testimony, the most recent Yankee Magazine has some tips on speaking your mind.

Action steps: Bill will send a separate note about testimony format, with notes about how to email testimony, also.Attendees will recommend additional Partners whom we might approach about partnering with MAC.

May 24, 2017, 5:30 - 7pm

 

PORTLAND CHAPTER

April 25, 2017, Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church, Portland

Members present: Michael Bacon, Nancy Bogg, Dan Bryant (Leader), Audrey Briggs, Phil Caper, Diana Cundy, Ed Cundy, Dick Dillihunt, Beth Franklin, Mark Kiefner, Nancy Miller, Ann Morrill, Robert Morrill, Elizabeth Oatley, Delene Perley, Marjorie Rosenbaum, Bonney Starbird

  1. Introductions
  2. Corrected minutes of March 29, 2017 were approved.
  3. Dan and Board members summarized April 6 MAC Board meeting.
  4. Recent chapter actions and efforts were noted -
    Showing Now Is the Time to the Primary Care Progress group at MMC, April 13
    Healthcare Forum, April 11, Windham (Phil on panel)
    HCHR Coalition breakfast meeting April 22 (Dianne, Ann)
    Endorsement efforts
  5. Future chapter actions –
    Now is the Time screening, June 6, 5:30 (film 6 to 7, panel discussion after), Rines Auditorium Portland Public Library
    Signature gathering at Longfellow Books and farmers’ markets
    LD 1274 hearing May 4 – members were encouraged to attend some or all activities.
    General discussion of bill, testimony, followed.
    Challenges to Professionalism conference June 17, Portsmouth
    People’s Report on Health Care (SMWC) – May 6, 1-3 PM, Congress Square.
  6. There not being enough time for planned presentation of a MAC overview for new members, this was tabled.
  7. There was not time for planned discussion of chapter organization either, but Beth pointed out that the field organizer may have recommendations for that, so it will not be pursued at this time.
  8. Meeting was adjourned at 8:50. Next meeting was set for May 16. 7 PM, at Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church.

Respectfully submitted, Dan Bryant