First, my apologies for going missing for so long. My home was broken into and things stolen (like my main computer, so data missing), and I’ve had a few business and personal trips, so am swimming in offline duties and troubleshooting.
Now, the exciting news. Last weekend I attended a planning meeting related to the upcoming National Day of Health Care Service requested by President Obama. “What?!” you say, ” I hadn’t heard about this.” Well, unless you are heavily engaged in social media, as well as closely paying attention to the White House streams, or had sponsored an event for MyBarackObama.com, chances are that you didn’t hear about it. I talked with a couple folk who work in healthcare for the government, and they were vaguely aware that it had been mentioned, but even they were largely unaware of this rapidly approaching and exciting event. Here is the most important part of what you need to know.
More information is available from Obama’s social networking site, which has returned to powerful activity since he formally took office.
Health Care Action Center: http://my.barackobama.com/page/content/health-care-action-center/
National Health Care Day of Service: http://my.barackobama.com/page/content/hcservice/
I’ve been told that if you want to be part of the conversation, if you want to know what is REALLY going on, get yourself an account on MyBarackObama.com. Please note that this is true for detractors as well as supporters. If you disagree with something the government is doing and want your voice here, this is a good place to comment. Personally, I find this a little puzzling, and am baffled that the communication is coming through relatively personal channels rather than through official channels, but that is an exploration for a different post.
Organizing for America: http://my.barackobama.com
Now, back to my story. June 6th, when the folks in the know were having Kickoff events around the country, I was attending one held in Second Life coordinated by Siri Vita, one of my wonderful neighbors and friends on Cedar Island.
Here is more information about the event in Second Life.
Obama Health Care Reform Plans Discussed: http://www.ireport.com/docs/DOC-268777
This was when I learned about what was going on. As a medical librarian, I am enthusiastic about any opportunity to provide outreach, information and support. The idea of the leaders of the country reaching out to hear from the people of America and listening to them is particularly encouraging. I hope that many will be able to participate. During the earlier social media conversations about health care reform in America, I heard a few themes that leaped out at me. One was the obvious access and costs of health care. A second was that both access and costs could be more effectively addressed through broader employment solutions — if people have good quality jobs, the health care costs might be more manageable. The third point surprised me at first. In each of the earlier meetings, I heard people say that there is not enough good quality health information vetted and synthesized for public consumption to help support personal health decisionmaking, and that people want the government to do more in this area. Having seen so many advertisements on television for MedlinePlus.gov, this surprised me. I could easily diverge into suggestions of resources, but since I’ve been asked to repeat a presentation on this topic for the events on the 27th, I will save that for a separate post.
We are planning what I hope will be a great series of events in Second Life on June 27th. I am hoping to see some local events on campus or in the community as well. There will be more information on this as plans solidify.
How do you get involved or find out more? In addition to the links mentioned above, you might also want to check into these.Remember – read the comments, discuss, say your piece, join the discussion.
Organizing for America: Events in Michigan: http://my.barackobama.com/page/event/search_results?type=advanced&orderby=day&state=mi&limit=50
VolunteerMatch: Obama’s Summer of Service: https://www.volunteermatch.org/?_kk=obama%20service&_kt=77eeb43c-a40c-417d-8c5a-0a88c52bf95b
Health Revolution Petition for Health Reform in America: http://www.healthrevolutionpetition.org/citizensincharge.html