I unapologetically advocate for state-based single-payer health care reform. Here’s why:
Single-payer is Cheaper:
- We currently waste $600 billion a year on administrative overhead, corporate dividends, and other health insurance practices that add absolutely zero value to the health care patients receive. By cutting out health insurance middlemen, we taxpayers will save money!
- Drug companies are currently free to raise prices as high as they want. On average, Americans pay twice as much for prescriptions as citizens of other nations. (The State of Utah is even flying its employees to Mexico to get them medications!) And in the last five years, the makers of necessary, lifesaving drugs like insulin have raised prices by up to 1000%. Same drug, same manufacturing process—but more profits extorted from our sickest fellow citizens. This will not be tolerated under a single-payer system. Drug companies will be paid a fair price—no more gouging!
- High-quality care saves money. It costs far less to administer a vaccine than it costs to treat a case of measles. (It’s better for the patient, too!) Yet in our current system, hospitals make more money by treating symptoms than they do by curing the disease. A single-payer program focuses on patients, not profits. By preventing illnesses, we’ll live longer, feel better, and save money.
Single-payer is Simpler:
- No networks! Every licensed care provider will be in the single-payer network. You will never again see an exorbitant bill for going to the wrong doctor.
- No discrimination! Was it a pre-existing condition or not? Under a single-payer system, it doesn’t matter. All conditions are always covered, from prenatal problems to end-of-life infirmities.
- No premiums, co-pays, or deductibles! You will have already paid for your medical care through your taxes. So when you go to the doctor, you can worry about getting well, not getting billed.
- No coverage gaps! Whether you’re employed, between jobs, or raising the kids at home, you’re always covered with the same great plan. So start that business, switch jobs, or go freelance—losing health care benefits is no longer an obstacle!
Single-payer is Better:
- Our current health care system provides the clinically correct treatment only 50% of the time. By standardizing best practices across states and the nation, we will deliver the right care to every patent right away.
- Many patients avoid getting MRIs, CT scans, or other diagnostics because they’re worried their insurance might not cover the cost. As a result, many cancers and other diseases aren’t diagnosed until it’s too late. Under a single-payer system, preventive screenings will be standard procedure. We will catch more diseases earlier, and we will save lives.
- Antibiotics have saved countless lives, but because they’re only taken for one or two weeks, they don’t turn large profits. We’re facing a crisis of antibiotic-resistant infections, yet drug companies are spending their energy on developing new heartburn medications and other lifetime-use drugs that will make them money. Under a single-payer system, research funding will be allocated by need, not profit. We will research what patients need most, not what sells best.
A state-based single-payer health care system in the United States would be better for our health, simpler to use, and cheaper to finance. Done well, it could become a source of national pride. As it helps us live healthier, longer lives, our productivity will increase, our deficits will shrink, and we as a nation will be better able to face the challenges of climate change, migration, and national defense. Join me in making better, simpler, cheaper health care a reality. Let’s do this!
More Health Care Policy Details
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