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Why Voting in November’s Election is Crucial for Healthcare 

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at PSU chapter.

Elections are always a stressful time because tensions rise and politics is such a fast-paced environment. Specifically, this election holds votes that will determine resolutions for key healthcare issues. In the past few years, the United States has been seen as such a tumultuous political landscape, but now it is time for college students to take a stand and voice their opinions, through voting. 

For the past two and half years, a global pandemic has taken over. Opinions on the pandemic have split, as the Democratic party tends to exercise more caution than the Republican party. Within this election, it is important to keep in mind that eventually, this pandemic must end.

However, there are proper public health initiatives that must take place to help slow the spread. This includes further booster vaccinations and masking if needed. When placing your vote this year, make sure you research candidates’ plans and past statements regarding COVID-19 and make an educated decision for your vote. 

Gun violence is another public health issue that America faces. In the past year, incidents like the Uvalde School Shooting and the 2022 Buffalo grocery store shooting rocked the nation. Thousands of people have died, and there needs to be a change to protect the health of unassuming citizens. Now more than ever, gun control is important. With this, advocate for legislation and politics that mirror your views towards this issue. 

Additionally, climate change is an issue that is significant to America’s health. Whether it be devastating wildfires or hurricanes, both costs of the United States are impacted. Climate change is consistently overlooked, and many people do not realize the long-lasting health issues it can cause. Further, many people do not think of how the other, younger generations will have to fix this issue. 

With this, it is important to learn about different lobbying groups that fight for climate change. Try to practice sustainability in your everyday life, but also voting can help battle this issue. Make sure to look at which candidates will try to attend environmental committees and their views on key agreements, like the Paris Agreement environmental initiative. 

Finally, women’s reproductive rights are seriously threatened. With the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and Roe v. Wade being reversed, the right to an abortion has changed. Many states have already begun to limit access to abortion, so it is important to vote for a candidate whose views reflect your opinion on the matter. Specifically for Pennsylvania, where Penn State is located, this vote matters the most as PA has so far not made any restrictions. However, this could change based on election results. 

To further this, women’s reproductive rights could be further hindered. Many political analysts believe that infertility treatments may be banned as well. In an article from the National Public Radio, Michelle Jokish Polo relays that in vitro fertilization (IVF) patients and doctors fear that this practice may be abolished. This would be difficult, as many people who have fertility issues may not be able to reach their goal of having a child.

Also, vote for your mental health. Politics can cause a lot of worry and uncertainty for the future. It is important to exercise your right to vote so that you can live with the peace of mind that you actively tried to make a change.

Health Policy and Administration student at Pennsylvania State University.