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PNHP RESOURCES

Media Advisory: Single-payer supporters to rally at April 6 health forum in Los Angeles

Physicians, nurses and health reform advocates to urge enactment of an improved 'Medicare for All,' decry outsized influence of corporate medicine in health reform debate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 2, 2009

Contacts:
John Shearer, M.D.
Roberto Ramos, California Physicians' Alliance, (510) 665-8523
Mark Almberg, Physicians for a National Health Program, (312) 782-6006, cell: (312) 622-0996, mark@pnhp.org

What

Press conference and rally to express support for single-payer national health insurance and to protest the "marginalization of majority opinion" at Monday's White House Forum on Health Care Reform at the California Endowment, 1000 North Alameda St., Los Angeles, at 9 a.m. PDT.

The health forum will be hosted by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire. Senior White House policy officials will also participate and help moderate a discussion involving diverse stakeholders in health care reform, according to the Obama administration. People in San Diego, Clovis and Oakland will also participate in the Los Angeles event via satellite.

Advocates of single-payer national health insurance, sometimes called an improved "Medicare for All," will be inside and outside, urging that single payer be "on the table" as a full-fledged option for reform. They will also decry the outsized role of the private health insurance industry, Big Pharma and other representatives of corporate medicine at the forum.

Physicians wearing their white coats, nurses in their scrubs, and other health reform advocates will assert that national health insurance is being accorded a minor, marginalized role at the forum, even though surveys show two-thirds of Americans and 59 percent of U.S. physicians support it.

They will demand that the single-payer model be given pride of place in the health care debate in view of that model's effectiveness in providing universal, comprehensive care; its ability to contain costs; and the fact that the annual savings in administrative costs -- $400 billion -- would mean that a U.S. single-payer system would require no increase in overall health spending.

The pro-single-payer rally is co-sponsored by the California Physicians' Alliance, the state chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP); the California Nurses Association/NNOC; the California School Employee Association; Health Care for All -- California; California Student Health Professional Alliance for Universal Health Care; the Labor Task Force for Universal Healthcare; Singlepayer Now; Progressive Democrats of America; and Healthcare-Now; among others.

Who

Stephen Tarzynski, M.D., pediatrician, Los Angeles
Parker Duncan, California Student Health Professional Alliance for Universal Health Care (CaSHPA)
Speakers from other sponsoring organizations.

When

9 a.m. PDT, Monday, April 6

Where

California Endowment, 1000 North Alameda St., Los Angeles

Why

Dr. Stephen Tarzynski: "Physicians are sick and tired of jumping over barriers to caring for our patients created by for-profit insurance companies. They really have no meaningful role in medical care. All we need to take care of people is the doctors, the hospitals, and one publicly funded, fair and speedy payment system where doctors have a powerful voice."


The California Physicians' Alliance (http://www.capa.pnhp.org/) is the California chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program (www.pnhp.org), a membership organization of over 16,000 physicians, supports a single-payer national health insurance program. PNHP is headquartered in Chicago and has chapters across the United States. To contact a physician-spokesperson in your area, contact info@pnhp.org or call (312) 782-6006.