Background and Context
These resources will help students develop a thorough understanding of Health Care and make connections between historical events, current conversations, and current policy proposals surrounding the issue. This section includes all of the context and content previously included in Close Up’s public policy chapters.
Current Issue Debates
Current Issue Debates are framed by a central question and followed by historical context, an overview of both sides of the topic, and discussion questions to facilitate deliberation in the classroom.
Videos from Policymakers
Brought to you by ASP HOMEROOM, through a collaboration between Close Up Foundation and A Starting Point, these supplemental videos are an introduction to policy areas that provide an opportunity for students to hear different perspectives directly from lawmakers.
These ready-to-use lesson plans can be utilized in conjunction with any of our resources to enhance the quality of student discourse in the classroom. Our supplemental Civic Readiness Guide provides a recommended lesson plan sequence for using our Current Issues resources.
Post | May 12, 2020
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is stressing our health care system, our economy, and parents trying to teach their children at home. It is also highlighting significant racial disparities in access to quality health care. According to an April survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, Black and Hispanic people are more likely than white people […]
Post | April 28, 2020
As COVID-19 has spread across the country and the globe, most U.S. states have taken to issuing shelter-in-place orders to help “flatten the curve.” As of April 20, 42 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico had asked residents to stay at home. However, over the past two weeks, there has been an increase […]
Post | March 26, 2020
The novel coronavirus, COVID-19, is affecting every American and people all over the world, but it does not affect everyone equally. The more than 500,000 Americans who are homeless are especially vulnerable—due to age, lack of access to health care, underlying medical conditions, and lack of access to information and news—and also pose a risk […]
Post | March 24, 2020
In the face of the spreading COVID-19 pandemic, government officials and medical experts are calling on people all over the world to practice social distancing.1 In general, this means canceling events and gatherings, avoiding large groups and crowds, and, when possible, staying home. Many people are working from home,2 schools have closed or moved online,3 and […]
Post | March 23, 2020
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak is believed to have started at a wildlife market in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. It is unclear which species transferred the virus to humans, but scientists largely agree on the point of origin.1 The 2002 outbreak of SARS, another type of coronavirus, began under similar circumstances.2 LISTEN: A 13-minute podcast […]
Post | March 4, 2020
Public health officials first encountered COVID-19, popularly called the coronavirus, in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Thus far, the virus has infected over 89,000 people, killing more than 3,000.1 In the United States, there have been more than 100 cases in 15 states; at least six people have died, all of them in Washington state.2 […]
Post | November 19, 2019
On September 11, 2019, President Donald Trump told reporters that his administration was considering a ban on flavored vaping products.1 This announcement came after a sometimes-fatal, vaping-related illness began appearing across the United States. On November 18, the Trump administration seemed to reverse course under pressure from constituents2 and corporate donors,3 announcing that no new […]
Post | October 9, 2019
Immigration policy and enforcement continues to be a major area of conflict between Democrats and Republicans. Currently, Congress is considering many bills related to immigration, asylum, migrant detention, and family separation. This week, we will look at two proposals that Republicans are advancing; two weeks ago, we examined two bills that Democrats are advancing. Republicans […]