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Medicare-for-all doctor to speak at Chicago’s ‘Rally to Restore Sanity’

Physician says relying on Wall Street health insurance companies to finance medical care is ‘insane’

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Oct. 29, 2010

Media advisory

Contact:
Rob Stone, M.D.
Ali Thebert, PNHP, (312) 782-6006, ali@pnhp.org

What
Rob Stone, M.D., an emergency medicine physician in Bloomington, Ind., and a nationally renowned advocate for single-payer national health insurance – an improved Medicare for all – will speak at the Chicago satellite rally coinciding with the “Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear” hosted by comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert in Washington on Saturday. Dr. Stone is presently scheduled to speak Saturday at 1 p.m. CDT. He is available for interview before and after the rally.

Where
Grant Park, Jackson and Columbus, at the Petrillo Music Shell.

When
11 a.m. – 2 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 30

Who
Dr. Rob Stone is the director and co-founder of Hoosiers for a Commonsense Health Plan (HCHP) and is a national board member of Physicians for a National Health Program.

Stone is an outspoken advocate of single-payer national health insurance -- an improved Medicare for all -- and a frequent public speaker in Indiana and nationwide. Of the new health law, he says: “You've probably heard the quote that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Well, that's what we've been doing, trying to reform health care. We keep trying to improve our system while relying on the huge Wall Street health insurance companies, and that's insane. It hasn't worked, and if we want to Restore Sanity, we need to try something different. We need to get rid of the insurance companies. They are the problem, not part of the solution. We already have Medicare, an American plan with a track record that works. Get rid of the insurance companies and bring everyone into an expanded and improved Medicare for all."

Stone has been an emergency department physician at Bloomington Hospital since 1983, and was the medical director of the Community Health Access Program Clinic in Bloomington from 2005 to 2007 until it was transformed into the Volunteers in Medicine Clinic. He continues to volunteer at the new clinic. He is assistant clinical professor of emergency medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine.

Born and raised in Evansville, Ind., he graduated from Dartmouth College and the University of Colorado Medical School. He is a diplomat of the American Board of Emergency Medicine.

This spring, Stone championed a controversial shareholder resolution at the annual meeting of WellPoint, the giant health insurer. The resolution called upon the company to return to its nonprofit roots. Despite the fact that debate on the measure was cut short, the resolution received over 30 million votes, 9.4 percent of the shares voted, which amount to "a jaw-dropping vote of no confidence” in WellPoint’s management, Stone writes in his blog at The Huffington Post.

A survey published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in April 2008 showed that 59 percent of U.S. physicians support government action to establish national health insurance, an increase of 10 percentage points over similar findings five years before.

A photo of Dr. Stone is available here and video footage of him is available here.

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Physicians for a National Health Program (www.pnhp.org), a membership organization of over 18,000 physicians, supports a single-payer national health insurance program. PNHP is headquartered in Chicago and has chapters across the United States.