President Obama and the American Jewish Community

Mobilizing for a Healthier Future: Participate in the Jewish Community Day of Action for Health Care Coverage on February 18th

Preexisting Condition Graphic

The number 18 is a powerful number in Jewish heritage. It represents “chai,” meaning life. Today, taking care of ourselves and others so that we all live love and healthy lives is more important than ever. The Jewish community has always placed a high importance on mental, spiritual, and physical health. Whether it’s your mother’s matzoball soup when you’re sick or helping someone from your temple get the care they need, maintaining good health for a long life is a core Jewish value. 

In order to ensure that every person, regardless of gender or age or preexisting condition, has access to our nation’s healthcare system, we are getting the word out on how Americans and their families can access health affordable, quality health insurance between now and March 31 in the federal and state health insurance Marketplaces. Since October 1, more than 3 million people have enrolled in a private insurance program through the Marketplaces, and over 6.3 million have enrolled in Medicaid or CHIP through state agencies or state-based marketplaces. It’s impossible to know when illness could strike, and it’s crucial that every American have some form of health insurance. That’s why we’re making a big push to educate about enrolling in the healthcare exchanges for everyone we know.

On February 18th, in partnership with the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), we’re calling on congregations, Jewish advocacy and social service organizations, and anyone in the Jewish community who is interest to participate in the Jewish Community Day of Action for Health Care Coverage. Here are 18 ways that you or the organizations you belong to or work with can participate in the Day of Action, which is all about ensuring a healthy future for Americans and their families, including in the American Jewish community. We hope you will join us!

18 Ways to Participate in February 18th Day of Action

  1. Post on Facebook to remind your friends of key dates and facts about enrolling in the health insurance marketplace. Visit for ideas.
  2. Write an article for your organization newsletter or member bulletin.
  3. Put up posters around your community that provides information about how, why, and by when to get covered in the marketplace.
  4. Talk to a young person in your life about the benefits of health insurance. Tell them how 5 in 10 young adults could pay $50 or less per month for coverage, less than most cell phone bills!
  5. Post on Twitter using the hashtag, #GetCovered and let people know they can access the marketplace (1) online at; (2) by phone at 1-800-318-2596, (3) in person at, (4) or by mail at
  6. Host a Shabbat dinner or house party, and talk about why getting covered is important to you. 
    Young Adult Health Plan Cost

  7. Send an email to a local list serve as a friendly reminder that the enrollment deadline is coming up on March 31, about the financial assistance available to many who enroll, and why you care that people on the list have the information they need to access quality, affordable coverage.
  8. Publish an ad in your local newspaper about key benefits of coverage in the marketplace.
  9. Plan a text study that explores Jewish perspectives on health care access, caring for our bodies, and caring for our neighbors.
  10. Reach out to media outlets at local community colleges and universities.
  11. Drop off palm cards about health coverage at your local synagogue, child care center, gym, or other local business.
  12. Sign up for NCJW’s distance learning conference call, “When Chicken Soup Isn’t Enough: Helping Our Communities Get Covered,” to learn more about the benefits of marketplace coverage.  Go to NCJW’s website for more information.
  13. Prepare a “Mitzvah Day” for your congregation before March 31. Work with another organization already involved in outreach to uninsured residents in your community to help raise awareness about how coverage works and how to access an affordable, quality plan in the marketplace.
  14. Write an op-ed encouraging reads to sign up for health insurance. ! Especially if you are a member of the clergy or an organizational leader, your voice inspires others to learn more about health coverage.
  15. Partner with local college student clubs to set up an information table on campus at venues such as the student center, cafeteria, or near the bookstore.
  16. Post a widget or badge on your organization or business website.
  17. Host a viewing party for an educational webinar about the marketplace provided by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnership Center. Webinars are available in English and Spanish. Learn more and see the upcoming schedule at  
    How the Marketplace Works

  18. Deliver a sermon or drash to highlight health care themes, and why people in your congregation should talk to their friends and family about getting covered.

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