The Utah Healthcare Initiative (UHI) is organized to bring the issue of health system reform before the voters of Utah. UHI is officially registered as a political issue committee (PIC) with the Lt. Governor’s office in Utah. As a PIC, UHI is able to receive political donations which anyone may give to advance the cause of health system reform. UHI plans to create a ballot initiative which meets the standards of Utah elections law and then circulate the petition among the voters of Utah. After obtaining the required number of signatures to quality for the ballot, UHI will provide the public with the necessary information to make a judgment about the need for health system change and the good fit between that need and the UHI health system proposal. UHI will run the campaign to support this ballot initiative.
Dr. Joe Jarvis: Trained in family medicine, public health, and environmental medicine at the University of Utah, Dr. Jarvis has enjoyed a varied twenty year career. He served the mostly uninsured patients in the Rose Park neighborhood of Salt Lake City as a family doctor before spending a post-graduate year as a medical officer for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in Washington DC. As the State Health Officer for Nevada, Dr. Jarvis had responsibility for all public health issues, including communicable disease control, health facility and HMO regulation, special children’s clinics, public health laboratory services, and newborn screening for metabolic disease. Dr. Jarvis has served on the faculties of schools of medicine in Colorado, Nevada, Washington DC, and Utah. For the past 15 years, Dr. Jarvis has owned a consulting business providing public health and environmental medicine services nationwide, including for clients in Guam, Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, Tennessee, Kentucky, Colorado, Florida, New York, and others. As a faculty member at National Jewish Center in Denver, Dr. Jarvis developed a practice serving patients from across the country with severe occupational lung disease, such as black lung, asbestosis, occupational asthma, and silicosis. With experience across the entire spectrum of health care–from public health to primary care to specialty service–Dr. Jarvis has experienced the whole panoply of American health system problems. Because he knows what is wrong, Dr. Jarvis is prepared to lead Utah to a sustainable health system solution.
Caitlin Jarvis: Caitlin is Joe’s daughter. She became involved in comprehensive health care reform early on in life because of the passion of her father. In fact she can remember a time in childhood where she constantly felt confused by the term “single-payer” because it sounded like “single-pear” (as in the fruit) to her. She has since learned the difference and now works as the UHI internet marketing guru. She is currently a student at the University of Utah working towards two bachelor degrees in marketing and gender studies. She is married and has two adorable dogs named Rufus and Sage.
Brian Barker: Aside from being Caitlin’s husband, Brian is the software engineer responsible for all the web presences of the Utah Healthcare Initiative. He has witnessed the devastating effects of the broken healthcare system in his own life and that of people he is close with. Brian is a supporter of the Utah Healthcare Initiative not by his relation to Dr. Jarvis but rather for his true, studied belief that this is a great way to solve a gaping problem of our time.