Hundreds of doctors to march in Chicago for single-payer health care

Health care advocates keep pressure on Congress as Medicare for all gains record support


Contact: Clare Fauke, communications specialist, Physicians for a National Health Program,, 312-782-6006

WHAT: “Health Care as a Human Right” march and rally
WHEN: Saturday, April 29, 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: March begins at Malcolm X College, 1900 West Jackson Blvd. at 5:00 p.m, continues south on Damen. Rally at the Louis Pasteur Monument (in front of Old Cook County Hospital), 1900 West Harrison at 5:30 p.m.
WHO: Approximately 200-300 health care professionals in white coats

This Saturday, hundreds of doctors and other health care providers will join community members to demand an end to our nation’s fragmented, for-profit health system. Wearing their white coats, marchers will call for congressional leaders to enact H.R. 676, The Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act.

“Even under the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans remain uninsured, and those with insurance have high co-pays and deductibles that deter them from seeking care,” said Dr. David Ansell, Senior Vice President and Associate Provost for Community Health Equity at Rush University Medical Center and a member of Physicians for a National Health Program. “Now is the time to replace the Affordable Care Act with real health care reform—Medicare for All—for our patients, family members, and neighbors.”

Momentum towards a national health program is unprecedented. While congressional Republicans try to strip the Affordable Care Act of its most basic provisions, the Medicare for all bill now claims support from a majority of congressional Democrats.

“Health care is a human right, not a commodity to be bought and sold,” said Pastor Emma Lozano of the Lincoln United Methodist Church. “Families should not have to choose between putting food on the table and taking their kids to the doctor.”

In addition to the demand for Medicare for All, Pastor Lozano will be announcing a “Healthcare Sanctuary Initiative,” asking all Illinois hospitals to provide charity care for undocumented patients needing ambulatory care services. Currently, charity care policies apply only to emergency care. “Until we achieve single payer health care, we will be asking our hospitals to provide medical sanctuary for undocumented immigrants who are under attack by the federal government.”

Other speakers include:

  • Nahiris M. Bahamón, M.D., resident in pediatrics at University of Chicago and a board adviser for Physicians for a National Health Program
  • Paul Pierre, M.D., Partners in Health
  • Linda Rae Murray, M.D., M.P.H., former chief medical officer, Cook County Public Health Department
  • Claudia Fegan, M.D., executive medical officer for the Cook County Health and Hospital System and chief medical officer at John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County; national coordinator, Physicians for a National Health Program.

Physicians for a National Health Program ( is a nonprofit research and educational organization of more than 21,000 doctors who support a single-payer national health program.