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Health care

Affordable Care Act
Senator Booker has witnessed New Jersey families struggle with our health care system and believes that all Americans should have access to affordable, quality health care. Senator Booker supports the ACA's goal of ensuring access to quality care and is working to improve the law. Senator Booker knows that there is work left to do to drive down the cost of health care and health insurance, and is closely monitoring the Affordable Care Act's implementation to make sure it works for all New Jerseyans.

In Senator Booker's Newark and Camden offices, New Jerseyans and their families can request help with health care coverage issues. If you or a loved one would like assistance from Senator Booker's office with a casework issue, click here.

Health Disparities
Data shows that in New Jersey, African Americans and Latinos have disproportionately higher death rates than whites in nearly every disease or condition examined, including prostate cancer, asthma, kidney disease, infant deaths, HIV, diabetes, and breast cancer.

Senator Booker believes that the ability to access quality, affordable care should not be determined by race, ethnicity or socioeconomic status. That's why Senator Booker worked with Representative Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) to write legislation, the Reducing Disparities Using Care Models and Education (ReDUCE) Act, that would seek to reduce health care disparities by more closely studying contributing factors to illness, evaluating existing programs that deliver health care, and making recommendations to improve care among underserved communities.

Medicare and Medicaid
Senator Booker knows that Medicare and Medicaid are an integral part of the commitment America makes to its citizens, and believes it is critical that Congress uphold the promise of Medicaid for our most vulnerable citizens and Medicare for our seniors - in New Jersey alone, more than 1.2 million seniors rely on Medicare for health coverage.

That is why Senator Booker is working to protect Medicare and rejects any attempts to turn Medicare into a voucher program. The Affordable Care Act has improved Medicare's long-term outlook, but we must continue to work to protect and strengthen Medicare for today's seniors and future generations.

In Senator Booker's Newark and Camden offices, New Jerseyans and their families can request help with Medicare and Medicaid issues. If you or a loved one would like assistance from Senator Booker's office with a casework issue, click here.

Nutrition
Research shows that poverty among children can have serious consequences for a child's long term physical, mental, and economic well-being. Making sure all of our children have access to food and aren't going to school hungry is a top priority for Senator Booker. The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are proven, essential tools to fight poverty by helping families put food on the table. Senator Booker will continue to advocate for strengthening both of these programs to help set kids up for greater long-term success in school and into adulthood.

Women's Health
Senator Booker is committed to supporting the fundamental rights of women to make their own health care decisions with their doctor. Senator Booker introduced the Access to Birth Control (ABC) Act to ensure that any woman with a valid prescription won't be denied their medication or intimidated when requesting birth control or emergency contraception at a pharmacy. A proud supporter of the lifesaving work that women's health organizations do, Senator Booker will continue to fight in the Senate for women's health care freedom.

Family Health
Studies have shown that Nurse-Family Partnerships can have tremendously positive effects on at-risk families. Children of participating families are less likely to commit crimes or have behavioral or cognitive issues, while participating mothers have been shown to rely less on welfare than their peers. Due to their net-benefits and positive impact on society, Senator Booker is committed to expanding federal support for these partnership programs.

Biomedical Research
Senator Booker is a strong supporter of biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), whose research has produced life-saving treatments. New Jersey is home to more than 250 NIH research grants, many of which have produced real medical breakthroughs in fighting leukemia, blindness, and traumatic injuries.

Sen. Booker has also been a staunch advocate of expanding research to combat Parkinson's disease, a motor system disorder that results from the loss of certain brain cells. This year, approximately 60,000 Americans will be diagnosed with Parkinson's, joining the 1 million people already living with the disease in the United States and the 4 million to 6 million diagnosed with it worldwide. Senator Booker's experience with his late father's Parkinson's disease is among the many motivations for Sen. Booker's commitment to finding a cure.

Senator Booker has also supported expanding research funding to combat other diseases like cancer and Alzheimer's.

Medical Marijuana
Senator Booker joined Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Rand Paul (R-KY) to introduce the bipartisan CARERS Act. The CARERS Act would allow Americans to gain access to the medical care they need without fear of federal prosecution by precluding the federal government from interfering with states that have legalized medical marijuana. The legislation would also reschedule marijuana from a Schedule I to Schedule II drug to recognize that it has accepted medical use, and permit VA doctors to recommend medical marijuana to veterans who are suffering from the visible and invisible wounds of war. Finally, the CARERS Act would remove barriers to research, allowing doctors to study the drug. The legislation would not legalize medical marijuana in all 50 states; rather, it would respect the states that set their own medical marijuana policies and prevent federal law enforcement from prosecuting patients, doctors, and caregivers in those states who are complying with state law.