The rural ambassadors

The Tennessee Justice Center has started a program they call the “Rural Ambassadors.”  It is a simple idea but one long ago needed.

Health care in Tennessee, due to the lack of Tenn Care expansion is in trouble.  The burden of uncompensated care has fallen on hospitals ill equipped to carry it on their own.  In the process not only has the health of the uninsured affected.  Things are more dangerous for all of us.

Things are bad in Tennessee.  It is lethal in rural Tennessee.  What do you do when you go to the hospital and there isnt one. This past weekend Linda and I went to the first Rural Ambassadors conference.  Not only did we find out that one hospital has closed but that several are anywhere from a month to a couple of months away from possibly closing.  They have run out of time and without change will soon not be there.

I listened to someone talk about what it was like to have someone have a heart attack and help be too far away.  It made me sick.

The point of the Rural Ambassador program is to give voice to the rural poor and uninsured.  It is to give people hit harder and hurt more than most the chance to have a voice.

A long time ago I heard someone say it best.  “We are people and this is wrong….We are people and this is wrong….We are people and this is wrong.”

It was a good weekend for us.  And we hope the start of better weeks and better weekends for Tennessee.  It was a weekend to be heard.  May Tennessee be a place someday that needs no ambassadors.  May we all be heard.

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