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PNHP RESOURCES

Media Advisory: Single-payer supporters to rally at March 31 health forum in Greensboro

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 26, 2009

Contacts:
Jonathan Kotch, M.D.
Mark Almberg, PNHP, (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 Tuesday's White House Forum on Health Care Reform at the North Carolina A&T Alumni Foundation Event Center in Greensboro, at 9 a.m. EDT.

The health forum will be hosted by North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue. Senior White House policy officials will participate and help moderate a discussion involving diverse stakeholders in health care reform, according to Perdue's office.

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 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 truly 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 Health Care for All NC, the state chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP); Progressive Democrats of America and its local coalition partner, Progressive Democrats of North Carolina; and Healthcare-Now, a national grassroots coalition for single-payer health reform.

Dr. Jonathan Kotch said today: "The single-payer alternative to industry-driven proposals has been systematically ignored until PNHP and others took their message to the streets. It is only through direct action that the political and financial power of insurance, pharmaceutical and for-profit medical interests can be challenged. The majority of the people want single payer, and our message to the White House is, pay attention."

Who

Jonathan Kotch, M.D., professor of maternal and child health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Miriam Thompson, M.S.W., Health Care for All - North Carolina
Carol Shores, M.D., an ear, nose and throat specialist in Chapel Hill

When

9 a.m. EDT, Tuesday, March 31

Where

North Carolina A&T Alumni Foundation Event Center, 200 N. Benbow Rd., Greensboro, N.C.

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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.