Public Health and Healthcare

Spending the past five years as Chair of the King County Board of Health, Joe McDermott knows the importance of investing in healthy families and communities. With women’s health and the right to choose under attack across the country, prescription drug costs continuing to rise and countless “votes” taken to overturn the Affordable Care Act, now more than ever Congress needs legislators who have the experience to move our country forward, not back, on issues of public health and healthcare.


Joe has delivered

✔ Saved King County’s Public Health Clinics from closure, ensuring needed family and women’s health services were preserved for over 100,000 women, children and families.

  • While serving as Chair of the King County Board of Health and the Budget Chair of the King County Council, Joe worked with Planned Parenthood and other community organizations to keep King County’s ten public health clinics open to the public and saved access to critical women’s health services at each.

✔ Created King County’s Drug Take-Back program to tackle our region’s opioid addiction epidemic.

✔ Created the King County Nurse-Family Partnership community health program, as a major program in Best Starts for Kids, connecting low-income first time mothers with registered nurses from pregnancy through the child’s second birthday.

✔ Declared gun violence a public health crisis while Chair of the King County Board of Health so public agencies can find data driven, practical solutions for the epidemic of gun violence in our communities.

“In King County, drug overdoses have surpassed car crashes as a leading cause of preventable death. And more people die from prescription medicines than from heroin and cocaine combined,” said Joe McDermott who chairs the King County Board of Health. “Programs like King County’s are important because about 30 percent of medicines go unused. Consumers need a safe and convenient way to get these drugs out of their homes before they put their families at risk.” – Kirkland Reporter, September 22, 2014


The plan for Congress

✘ Fight to win federal funds for Washington state, and increase federal funding available for supporting local jurisdictions to fight the opioid epidemic through public health efforts, not incarceration.

✘ Implement a Public Option to strengthen the Affordable Care Act.

✘ Protect and expand a woman’s right to choose, and overturn the Hyde Amendment.

✘ Protect Medicare and Medicaid from the consistent efforts to eliminate and privatize.

✘ Move our country towards a Single-Payer Health System to ensure all Americans have access to health care.