Posts Tagged ‘single-payer’

health care use

We’ve said it again and again: Congress cannot exclude single-payer advocates from the debate on health care reform. At meetings and rallies around the country, Americans have demanded to know why Congress has not considered single-payer, the most popular health reform proposal around. On June 11, Dr. Margaret Flowers of Physicians for a National Health Program testified before the full Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions – the first time all year someone advancing single-payer had been allowed to participate in the Senate discussion of health care reform.

At the time, we said Dr. Flowers’ testimony wasn’t enough. A great deal of misinformation was still floating out there about single-payer that Congress had not yet addressed. But today, our own Dr. Sidney Wolfe, director of Public Citizen’s Health Research group and our acting president, was invited to testify in front of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce about the single-payer option.

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Just because the Bush administration is out doesn’t mean the battle with the corporate lobbying machine is over. This week has been a busy one for Public Citizen and our efforts to fight for reforms that benefit the American public. Check out these news highlights.

CQ Politics quotes Public Citizen’s campaign finance reform lobbyist in an excellent piece about Senate Finance chairman Max Baucus (D-Mon) going fishing for dollars at a $2,500 per person fundraising event.

“It’s unseemly to be doing this just before the markup,” said [Public Citizen’s Craig] Holman, referring to pending committee action on Baucus’ draft health care bill. “This kind of schmoozing of lawmakers clearly buys influence. This kind of event clearly shows why we need public financing.”

The Associated Press called on Tyson Slocum, Public Citizen’s energy program director, to comment on the oil industry’s amped-up effort to lobby, baby, lobby; already, Big Oil has spent $44.5 million trying to get Congress to see things its way. Time to fight back.

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A new poll released by the University of Michigan reveals that 46 percent of respondents are worried about paying for future care. Even more telling, nearly one in four revealed a concern of losing coverage within the next year. These concerns emerge as Congress begins the debate over health care reform — a debate that doesn’t involve all opinions.

As we’ve said before, the single-payer option is the best way to make sure that this doesn’t happen. Not only would all Americans receive health care under this system, 95% of all Americans would pay less for their healthcare than they are currently paying. Why isn’t Congress considering single-payer? The Michigan Messenger gives a great summary. Basically, it’s the same partisan bickering and insurance industry meddling that has held up health care reform for decades.

86 percent in the Michigan poll said they viewed health care reform as an integral part of tackling the nation’s economic crisis. Other polls taken this week say the same thing. So while Congress is doing the right thing by taking on this issue, meaningful reform can’t be found without a real discussion of single-payer. Sign up now to receive our alerts on actions you can take regarding important health-related issues

Do we really need single-payer health insurance?

According to a new study issued by our friends at the Harvard Medical School, Harvard Law School and Ohio State University, we really do.

Researchers looked at more than 2,000 of bankruptcy filings in 2007 and found that 62 percent of them were related to medical expenses. This means that someone suffered income loss due to their illness and/or the magnitude of their medical debts was too great to overcome.

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