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PNHP RESOURCES

Articles of Interest Archives

These articles highlight many of the health care related stories in the news–ranging from single-payer op-eds by PNHP members to reports by newspapers on corporate health care.

  • Posted on Tuesday, April 5, 2011
    By Esther Addley | The Guardian
    The song came about, Donnelly, now 22, told the Guardian, because he has "close family and friends" – his girlfriend is one – "who want to work in the NHS in the future hopefully, but they're worried about the cuts. So I researched it on the internet and I just did the song. I feel for the people that are ill in hospital. If they were privatised they wouldn't be able to afford it." And why focus on Lansley in particular? "Because I'm peed off with the guy."

  • Posted on Monday, April 4, 2011
    By WILLIAM G. SESLER | Erie (Penn.) Times-News
    While doing some research on health-care reform, I came across an interesting story. In 2004, the Canadian Broadcasting Co. conducted polls for Canadians to nominate their choice for the man or woman whom they felt was the best Canadian in history. The person who won was Tommy Douglas.

  • Posted on Friday, April 1, 2011
    By Ginny Lee | Illinois Times (Springfield)
    “Health care is the civil rights issue of the 21st century,” Donna Christensen, a member of Congress, stated Monday evening at the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield. The congresswoman from the U.S. Virgin Islands spoke on “Ethics, Race and Class” to members of the medical community and others.

  • Posted on Friday, April 1, 2011
    Ted Drummond, MD | Letters | Seacoastonline.com
    On a national level, eliminating the Bush tax cuts for people who make over $250,000 a year and shifting our health care system away from one that is profit-driven toward a model centered on health (e.g. Medicare-for-all) would improve our health and pocketbook. Here in New Hampshire, we weathered the recent economic downturn better than many places. Slight adjustments to our current tax structure could easily pay for the cuts some say are "necessary."

  • Posted on Friday, April 1, 2011
    By Kay Tillow | FireDogLake
    Detroit Diesel has been around since April 1937, a few months after the Flint sit down strike that won union recognition. This year, 1,100 retired auto workers at Detroit Diesel suffered a giant cut in company provision of health benefits because their Voluntary Employees Benefits Association, VEBA, went belly up. Workers who retired between 1993 and 2004 will have to pick up an increasing share of the premiums that were once fully covered by the company. Some retirees will have to pay as much as $4,000 per year, or even higher, just to keep their health coverage.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 30, 2011
    By Samuel Metz | The Oregonian
    Am I crazy, a physician embracing legislative efforts to create a single-payer health care system in Oregon? You be the judge.

  • Posted on Monday, March 28, 2011
    By Daniel Staples | Times-Argus (Barre-Montpelier, Vt.)
    U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and Gov. Peter Shumlin spoke before health profession students who gathered Saturday at the Statehouse in support of single-payer health care.

  • Posted on Monday, March 28, 2011
    By Garrett Adams | Lexington Herald-Leader
    Since the passage of its landmark health reform law of 2006, the people of Massachusetts have been living like a canary in a coal mine. National health policy experts have been watching them, closely studying how they're faring under the reform.

  • Posted on Monday, March 28, 2011
    By MARVIN MALEK | Barre-Montpelier (Vt.) Times Argus
    I was astonished when I read the rationale given by IBM’s John O’Kane in opposing the inclusion of IBM and other self-insured companies into the single-payer system the Legislature is attempting to craft.

  • Posted on Friday, March 25, 2011
    By Rachel Zimmerman | Commonhealth blog, WBUR.org
    Medical students from Vermont and neighboring states are heading to Montpelier this weekend to rally in support of a publicly-funded, single payer health system for the Green Mountain state.

  • Posted on Thursday, March 24, 2011
    By Phillip Longman | Washington Monthly
    Ten years ago, veterans hospitals were dangerous, dirty, and scandal-ridden. Today, they're producing the highest quality care in the country. Their turnaround points the way toward solving America's health-care crisis.

  • Posted on Thursday, March 24, 2011
    By Anne Galloway | Vtdigger.com
    You can call it Frank. You can call it Fred. But don’t call it a single-payer health care system. That was the message Rep. Mark Larson, D-Burlington, delivered to lawmakers in the House Appropriations Committee last week and during the House floor debate on Vermont’s latest effort to reform its health care system. The euphemism single-payer was struck from the bill in an amendment to make the legislation more palatable to Republicans, sources say. The bill passed 89-47 after eight hours of debate, speeches, amendments and roll call votes. The legislation now goes to the state Senate.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2011
    By Dr. Claudia Chaufan | OpEdNews.com
    On March 23, a year after President Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), "the most expansive social legislation enacted in decades," according to the New York Times, it's worth taking a look at Massachusetts.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2011
    PNHP Board member Dr. Andy Coates and Canadian health economist Bob Evans, Ph.D spoke on March 12, 2011, in Vancouver, British Columbia at the Affirming Equity: Strengthening Health Care Financing and Delivery conference, hosted by Simon Fraser University. Learn how Canadians students, researchers, health professionals, and health care providers are gathering to affirm equity in their health care system, and fight back against threat of profit-driven financing and delivery. Listen to the conference talks, and to an interview with Dr. Coates on Canadian radio.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2011
    By Suzanne L. King, M.D. | The Berkshire (Mass.) Eagle
    Writing about the Massachusetts health care reform program in a 2009 issue of the Wall Street Journal, Governor Deval Patrick stated, "Because of our reform, families are less likely to be forced into bankruptcy by medical costs." Both Governor Patrick and President Obama have used the benchmark of medical bankruptcy as a key measure to prove the success of their health insurance reforms.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2011
    By Rachel Zimmerman | WBUR
    More than 200 doctors from 39 states and the District of Columbia say they’d consider moving to Vermont if that state switches to a publicly financed single-payer health care system, according affiliates of Physicians for a National Health Program, an organization of physicians who advocate for single-payer national health insurance.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 22, 2011
    By Kevin Zeese | FireDogLake
    At its one year anniversary the Obama health care law is shrinking while the health care crisis grows. Americans who lack any health coverage still exceeds 50 million, over 45,000 deaths occur annually due to lack of health insurance, and 40 million Americans, including over 10 million children, are underinsured.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 22, 2011
    By Polly Toynbee | The Guardian
    [European] systems differ, built on each country's distinct social history, all reflecting national stories. But all are basically state-funded through taxation, even if at first glance they look like insurance schemes. Essentially, the working healthy pay for the sick and the old, who are the heaviest users of care.

  • Posted on Monday, March 21, 2011
    By Maria Termini | The Bay State Banner
    Health care in the United State is in a crisis. Our present health care system is fragmented between multiple private insurance companies and government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. The system is controlled by the profit making insurance industry and based on each person’s ability to pay and not based on needed medical care.

  • Posted on Monday, March 21, 2011
    By Nancy Remsen | Burlington Free Press
    Tuesday the Vermont House of Representatives begins debate on health-care reform — one of the most important bills of the session for Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin and the Democratic majorities in the Legislature.

  • Posted on Monday, March 21, 2011
    Editorial | Bennington (Vt.) Banner
    Part of the blame for the demise of Bennington Iron Works, which announced this week it will close by May after 43 years, was that it faced "relentless" competition from Canadian firms in the manufacture of steel products for construction and other uses.

  • Posted on Monday, March 21, 2011
    By Lauren Else | In These Times
    Three weeks after the House of Representatives voted to repeal last year’s landmark healthcare reform legislation, and one week after a federal judge ruled the bill’s insurance mandate unconstitutional, Vermont’s leaders decided to take matters into their own hands.

  • Posted on Friday, March 18, 2011
    By Robert Speer | Chico (Calif.) News and Review
    To understand why the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has fallen short of what President Obama envisioned for health-care reform, consider the story of Billy Tauzin, as told by Dr. Jeff Lobosky.

  • Posted on Friday, March 18, 2011
    By Carey Goldberg | WBUR, Boston NPR
    There’s a new cause that calls for getting on the bus. Next Saturday morning, (3/26), dozens of Boston-area medical students and others heading into health care careers plan to board buses for Montpelier, to rally at the State House in support of the single-payer system that Vermont leaders aim to create.

  • Posted on Friday, March 18, 2011
    By Annie Brown | EDGE (Boston)
    Patients, doctors and health insurance companies are engaged in a historic debate surrounding the future of healthcare in America. Most of the discussions surrounding healthcare are led by politicians who either celebrate President Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (2010) as a necessary first step towards equal access or view it as a direct assault on constitutional rights. However, there are millions of patients and physicians who aren’t pleased with either party’s response to the healthcare crisis.

  • Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2011
    William C. Hsiao, Ph.D. | NEJM
    The United States faces two major problems in the health care arena: the swelling ranks of the uninsured and soaring costs. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) makes great strides in addressing the former problem but offers only modest pilot efforts to address the latter. Experience in countries such as Taiwan and Canada shows that single-payer health care systems can achieve universal coverage and control inflation of health care costs.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011
    By Anne Galloway | VtDigger.com
    What happened to Sabra Ewing, could have happened, as she put it, to anyone. She had a high deductible ($20,000) health insurance plan for her family. For years, doctors had told Ewing she was healthy, and she stopped going in for annual checkups to avoid the expense. Then one day she found a dark spot on the side of her heel. It took her three weeks to get an appointment with a dermatologist. By the time Ewing was diagnosed, she had stage three melanoma.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011
    By NEAL P. GOSWAMI | Bennington Banner
    Dozens of Vermonters offered thoughts on health care reform in Vermont to members of the House and Senate Health Care Committees during a statewide interactive hearing Monday.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011
    By Carl Berdahl | Atrium Magazine
    In the wake of ineffective national health reform, Vermont is poised to try again: Legislators are considering guaranteeing—rather than mandating—health insurance for all Vermonters through a single-payer system.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011
    By Anthony Brooks | WBUR Boston Radio
    As many states, and Republicans in Congress, are looking for ways to roll back President Obama’s signature health care law, Vermont is moving in a different direction.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011
    By Dr. Claudia Chaufan | Santa Cruz (Calif.) Sentinel
    March is Women's History Month. But this year, for the vast majority of women in America, there is little to celebrate.

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    By Rebecca Robinson | The Lund Report (Portland, Ore.)
    Supporters of single-payer healthcare legislation had their day in Salem Friday, with a well-attended hearing on the Capitol steps and an emotional hearing for the single-payer bill, House Bill 3510, before the House Health Care Committee.

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    By Bill Graves | The Oregonian
    A House hearing Friday on a bill to establish a single-payer universal health care plan in Oregon drew testimony from about two dozen people, most in favor of the proposal.

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    By BENNETT HALL | Corvallis Gazette-Times
    Shortly after noon on Friday, state Rep. Michael Dembrow stepped to the microphone and addressed a crowd of about 150 people gathered on the steps of the Oregon Capitol in Salem. “You look so healthy,” he told his audience. “You must all have good health insurance.”

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    By BENNETT HALL | Corvallis Gazette-Times
    It’s 8 o’clock in the morning, and Betty Johnson and Mike Huntington are huddled around a cordless phone set up on a folding table in Johnson’s Corvallis living room. The two veteran health care activists listen intently to the voices coming over the speaker.

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    By Ronald Pies, M.D. | OpEdNews
    In a recent piece in the Boston Globe, David Abel described a 52-year-old woman named Ona Stewart. Despite being deaf and blind, she is able to live independently, and earn a living by making pottery. Ona Stewart has no family in the area, and relies on a state-funded program that provides aides who help her communicate, shop, and run errands.

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    By Dr. James Mitchiner | AnnArbor.com
    Well, Karl Rove has done it again. In a recent opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal (“The Politics of Saving ‘Granny,’” Feb. 3), the former Bush presidential adviser sings the praises of replacing traditional Medicare with a federal voucher system.

  • Posted on Monday, March 14, 2011
    Dr. Arthur J. Sutherland III | Letters | Memphis Commercial Appeal
    Our health system is really a health care market that is not "free" and has many distortions. PPACA is flawed because it continues our nation's reliance on an inefficient, wasteful and costly private insurance model of financing health care. Nationally we deny health care access to millions, bankrupt patients and families, ratchet up costs and frustrate efforts to improve quality.

  • Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011
    By Steve Early | The Nation
    After years of political frustration, Earl Mongeon had to see it to believe it. Often, when he finishes his twelve-hour night shift at IBM in Essex Junction, Mongeon heads home for breakfast and a few hours of brush clearing on his sixty-acre lot in Westford. In mid-January, the 55-year-old microprocessor assembler and workers’ rights advocate hopped into his car and drove in the opposite direction, to Montpelier. There, at the state Capitol, Mongeon and other supporters of single-payer healthcare gathered to hear Senators Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy, Congressman Peter Welch and new Democratic Governor Peter Shumlin explain that last year’s national healthcare bill — a costly mix of subsidies to private medical plans, some insurance market reforms, Medicaid expansion and a mandate that people buy coverage if they don’t already have it — isn’t good enough for the Green Mountain State.

  • Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011
    Dr. Charles Benedict: I want to start off by thanking the medical students, some of my colleagues – there are physicians up here, there are nurses up here, there are future physicians, future nurses, health care people, social workers. We’re all banding together in support of the cause up here, which is to – and we usually don’t like to use this word – kill the bill!

  • Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011
    From All Unions Committee For Single Payer Health Care--HR 676 | Press Release
    On February 11, 2011, Congressman John Conyers, Jr., Democrat of Michigan, reintroduced Expanded and Improved Medicare for All, HR 676, the national single payer health care legislation, into the 112th Congress. With minor changes, such as the addition of oral surgery to the benefits, HR 676 is the same and will provide all medically necessary care to everyone through progressive public funding and elimination of private health insurance companies. There are no premiums, no co-pays, no co-insurance, no deductibles.

  • Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011
    By Tim Gaynor | MSNBC
    A pacemaker and defibrillator fitted to carpenter Douglas Gravagna's failing heart makes even rising from the couch of his Phoenix-valley home a battle. But it is not congestive heart failure that is killing him, he says. It is a decision by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to stop funding for some organ transplants as the state struggles to reduce a yawning budget deficit.

  • Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011
    Medical Economics
    If Massachusetts’ experience with healthcare reform is any guide, national reform won’t greatly reduce the number of your patients forced into bankruptcy because of their medical bills.

  • Posted on Thursday, March 10, 2011
    The following text contains the March 10 testimonies of professor Ellen Oxfeld of Vermont Health Care for All and Dr. Peggy Carey, interim chair of the Vermont chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program, before the Vermont House Committee on Health Care, regarding H.202, “An Act Relating to a Single-Payer and Unified Health System.”

  • Posted on Thursday, March 10, 2011
    By Don McCanne, M.D.
    As the author of a PNHP blog entry in November 2010 on the limitations of the Wyden-Brown amendment, which would move up the date when states could obtain waivers from the federal government to introduce their own state-based health reforms, I'd like to clarify my position.

  • Posted on Thursday, March 10, 2011
    By Michelle Roberts, Health reporter | BBC News
    People living in England enjoy better health than Americans, despite less investment in healthcare, research published in the US has revealed.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 9, 2011
    By Joan Brunwasser | OpEdNews.com
    My guest today is Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, professor of medicine at Harvard University and a member of Physicians for a National Health Program.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 9, 2011
    By Christian Nordqvist | Medical News Today
    Since Massachusetts implemented its landmark 2006 legislation which made the purchase of health insurance compulsory, the number of personal bankruptcies associated to medical bills or illness has increased, researchers revealed in American Journal of Medicine. Total medical bankruptcies rose from 7,504 in 2007 to 10,093 in 2009 in the state.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 9, 2011
    By Margaret Flowers | t r u t h o u t
    The president supports state innovation in health care, but vigilance is required to ensure state reforms improve health as we continue to call for national reform.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    By Dr. Bruce Trigg | Albuquerque Journal
    Today is Human Rights Day at the State Capitol. And today Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino will present Senate Joint Resolution 5 for a state constitutional amendment that will recognize health care as a human right to the first legislative committee to which it has been assigned.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    U.S. News and World Report The percentage of personal bankruptcies caused by medical bills or personal illness has changed only slightly since Massachusetts began requiring people to buy health insurance in 2006, a new study finds.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    By Jason Millman | The Hill
    An individual mandate has done little to stem the rate of medical bankruptcies in Massachusetts, boding poorly for the federal healthcare reform law enacted almost a year ago, according to a new liberal study.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    By Kay Lazar | The Boston Globe
    The 2006 Massachusetts law that required nearly everyone to buy health insurance has not significantly staunched residents' pain from medical bankruptcies, according to a new study.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    By Eryn Brown | Los Angeles Times
    Studying medical bankruptcies in Massachusetts, whose recent healthcare reform was a model for national reform, researchers found that while new insurance rules increased the number of people who had coverage, those rules did not improve coverage -- leaving many still struggling with medical debt.

  • Posted on Monday, March 7, 2011
    By Nancy Remsen | Burlington (Vt.) Free Press
    By the end of this week, the House HealthCare Committee will vote on a bill that authorizes the building blocks for a future single-payer health care system.

  • Posted on Monday, March 7, 2011
    By Samuel Metz, M.D. | Portland (Ore.) Alliance
    The private health insurance industry, sacred cow of Democrats and Republicans alike, produces a 40 percent administrative loss. This is not a misprint. Private health insurance financing is 10 – repeat – 10 times more costly than all known single-payer agencies.

  • Posted on Monday, March 7, 2011
    By Nancy Remsen | Burlington (Vt.) Free Press
    For Dr. Robert Penney, a primary care physician who has practiced in Vermont for 25 years, there isn't any question about the need to reform health care.

  • Posted on Friday, March 4, 2011
    Adam Sullivan | WCAX News
    Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center's Frank McDougall knows a lot of people who impact the health care industry in New Hampshire and Vermont, and all the way to the White House.

  • Posted on Friday, March 4, 2011
    By Larry Carson | The Baltimore Sun
    The idea of a single-payer health care system was lost in the debate over the much-amended national health care reform1 passed by Congress last year, but three Howard County delegates are co-sponsors of legislation in this year's General Assembly that seeks to bring the idea to fruition in the Free State.

  • Posted on Thursday, March 3, 2011
    By Rose Ann DeMoro | The Huffington Post
    The past two weeks have been a "Where's Waldo" moment for President Obama. He's been largely a bystander while tens of thousands of American workers, joined by students, and community allies, marched in Madison's snow and freezing temperatures, and slept on the floors of the capitol to defend their most fundamental right to freedom of assembly and a collective voice.

  • Posted on Wednesday, March 2, 2011
    The following is a slightly edited translation of an interview with Edgar A. Lopez, M.D., F.A.C.S., which was conducted in Spanish by journalist Pablo Castelo of Al Día en América in early February. Dr. Lopez is a member of Physicians for a National Health Program and Kentuckians for Single Payer Health Care.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 1, 2011
    Canadian Doctors for Medicare | Press release
    A new report on health care financing demonstrates that the widely repeated concern about the sustainability of public health are is unsubstantiated. Despite comments by Prime Ministers, Premiers, bank presidents and newspaper reporters suggesting that we are in a public health care financing crisis, the facts show that Medicare and public sector health care spending in general has grown little over the last 30 years and shos no signs of rapid future growth. The report, “Neat, Plausible and Wrong”, was released today by Canadian Doctors for Medicare (CDM) and draws on the full range of health care statistics to put the myth to rest.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 1, 2011
    By Wendell Potter | The Center for Public Integrity
    Chances are you’ve never heard of Peter Shumlin, who last month was sworn in as the 81st governor or Vermont. That’s about to change. If Shumlin makes good on a signature campaign promise, he might end up as well-known and beloved in the United States as Tommy Douglas is in Canada.

  • Posted on Tuesday, March 1, 2011
    By Charles McMahon | Seacoastonline.com (N.H.)
    While I'll be the first to acknowledge my lack of excitement when asked to cover something related to health care, that doesn't necessarily mean I don't understand and appreciate its importance and the place it has in the news.

  • Posted on Monday, February 28, 2011
    By Steven Cotterill | Letters | The Shepherdstown (W.Va.) Chronicle
    A more centralized healthcare system, which the healthcare reform act of last year didn't even come close to approaching, no more represents the beginnings of socialism than reading Nietzsche turns you into a nihilist. The one does not lead to the other.

  • Posted on Monday, February 28, 2011
    By DR. JULIAN GONZALEZ | Anchorage Daily News
    It seems Gov. Sean Parnell has drunk the tea party Kool-Aid about health care reform in order to be "Republican Fashionable." You would think he would at least consider the health care reform instituted by fellow Republican and former governor Mitt Romney in Massachusetts, a plan not unlike the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). But, that's OK, because only 14 percent of Massachusetts physicians think their state's model would be viable for the rest of the country (Massachusetts Medical Society "Physician Workforce Survey", 2010). However, 66 percent preferred either a single-payer plan or a private-public insurance option.

  • Posted on Monday, February 28, 2011
    Jerry Frankel | Letters | The New York Times
    Any reform that doesn’t offer nonprofit, quality, affordable universal access is inferior and fraught with serious problems, not to mention the complexity and unfairness of for-profit insurance.

  • Posted on Monday, February 28, 2011
    By Mel Huff | VtDigger.com
    Vermonters should be prepared for a campaign by health insurance companies to undermine public support for single-payer health care, an industry whistleblower declared at a Statehouse hearing Thursday.

  • Posted on Friday, February 25, 2011
    By SCOTT E. KINNEY | Foster's Daily Democrat (N.H.)
    Nearly 60 city residents gather in the Levinson Meeting Room of the Portsmouth Public Library Wednesday night to educate themselves on the continued fight for a single-payer health care system.

  • Posted on Friday, February 25, 2011
    Susanne L. King | Letters | Boston Herald
    In response to your editorial “Single-payer fan 'fesses up” (Feb. 23) that suggests a single-payer health care program in our state would bring long wait times, I would point to Canada, which delivers health outcomes as good as ours for half the price per person. The median wait time for cardiac surgery in Ontario is not months, but 16 days. And those patients are not left with bills that lead to medical bankruptcy. As a doctor, I agree with Terry Dougherty in his support for single-payer care.

  • Posted on Friday, February 25, 2011
    By John Flowers | Addison County (Vt.) Independent
    Gov. Peter Shumlin told Porter Medical Center officials on Tuesday to be patient in weathering what he believes will be a short-term financial storm en route to a new, single-payer health care system he said will bring long-term success and financial sustainability to the industry.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 24, 2011
    By Amy Bartlett | Siuslaw News (Florence, Ore.)
    With a shared passion for health care reform, a group of Northwest physicians, calling themselves “Mad as Hell Doctors,” have been traveling the country to get the word out about changing what they term a “fragmented, broken health care ‘non-system.’”

  • Posted on Thursday, February 24, 2011
    Leonard Rodberg, PhD

  • Posted on Thursday, February 24, 2011
    By Kyle Cheney | Boston Herald
    A senior Patrick administration health care official said Friday that a single payer system may work more effectively and efficiently than Massachusetts’s existing insurance market, a high-profile endorsement that raised eyebrows at a legislative hearing.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 24, 2011
    Pharmaceutical companies continue to claim that high research and development (R&D) costs make it necessary for them to charge high prices and retain long ownership of patents to recoup costs. But a new study co-authored by UVic health economist Rebecca Warburton and Donald W. Light of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey demonstrates that high R&D estimates have been constructed by industry-supported economists to support the companies’ claims.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 22, 2011
    The Presbytery of Mid-Kentucky respectfully overtures the 220th General Assembly (2012) to instruct Mission Responsibility Through Investment (MRTI) to report to the General Assembly Mission Council on the corporate practices of Cigna, Aetna, Humana, WellPoint, United Health Care health insurance companies – in particular as such practices compare with and relate to previous General Assembly actions relative to health care. The General Assembly Mission Council is authorized and encouraged to act on this information, and, as it deems appropriate, implement divestment procedures as well as encourage individual Presbyterians and congregations to divest of holdings in the said companies; and, in view of the urgency of the ongoing health care crisis, to take action within six months of the adoption of this recommendation; and to report to the 221st General Assembly (2014) on divestment actions.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 22, 2011
    By Peter Hirschfeld | Times Argus (Barre-Montpelier, Vt.)
    Three weeks after unveiling a draft version of his single-payer health care proposal, Harvard economist William Hsiao returned to the Legislature Friday to submit a final copy that reaches exactly the same conclusion.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 22, 2011
    By Anne Galloway | Vtdigger.com
    Harvard economist William Hsiao told lawmakers a month ago that if they adopted a single payer style health care plan, Vermonters could save $500 million in the first year of implementation.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 22, 2011
    By Nancy Remsen | The Burlington Free Press
    The consultants who urged Vermont to move to a single-payer health-care system received 170 comments — complimenting, questioning and criticizing their draft report — but nothing persuaded the researchers to revise their basic recommendation, they told lawmakers Friday.

  • Posted on Friday, February 18, 2011
    Randy E. Barnett | Letter to the Editor | The New York Times
    Congress has many constitutional ways to address the market distortions that are inflating the costs of both health care and health insurance. And, although I would oppose such a program, existing doctrine would allow Congress to impose a “single payer” tax-and-spending scheme like Medicare on everyone.

  • Posted on Friday, February 18, 2011
    Pippa C. Abston, MD, PhD | Letters to the editor | Huntsville Times
    Reducing Medicaid funding would put every pregnant woman and newborn in our state at risk. It doesn't matter how much money you can pay your doctor if that doctor is not around. The same thing could happen to children now able to get care from excellent pediatric subspecialists. Pediatric surgeons, cardiologists, cancer specialists and others rely on 40 percent or more of their income being paid by Medicaid. Without that money, they may not be able to continue caring for children with private insurance either.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2011
    By James Clark | Health News Florida
    As a former state director of social services (South Carolina), health policy chief in Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration, and assistant Secretary for programs in the Department of Children and Families, I find the current debate on health care reform has failed to fully inform the general public. The discussions have mentioned the “elephant in the room”: the cost of the current delivery system, and then have gone downhill.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2011
    From the Office of Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.-I) Section 1332 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act – the “Waiver for State Innovation” – allows states to waiver out of some of the requirement of federal health reform if they meet certain standards. The provision in the new law was authored by Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and strongly supported by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.).

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2011
    By Jessica Zigmond | ModernHealthcare
    As federal lawmakers continue to debate the constitutionality, financing and implementation of the healthcare reform law, one House Democrat has introduced legislation calling for a universal health insurance program with single-payer financing.

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2011
    The Huffington Post
    Justin Bieber has taken the United States by storm, but if he gets sick, he may find himself retreating back to Canada -- and not just for the home-cooked meals.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 15, 2011
    Commentary from Dr. Ida Hellander, Drs. David Himmelstein and Steffie Woolhandler, and Vermont Health Care for All members Dr. Deb Richter, Ethan Parke, Marilyn Mode, Ellen Oxfeld and Marjorie Power

  • Posted on Monday, February 14, 2011
    By Elaine Hou | Taiwan Today
    Debate has raged for almost a decade over the design of Taiwan’s second-generation National Health Insurance System. The seemingly endless rounds of consultations and negotiations pushed the patience of private and public sector participants to the limit, but their efforts paid handsome dividends Jan. 4 after amendments to the NHI Act passed muster in the Legislature.

  • Posted on Monday, February 14, 2011
    By Wendell Potter | The Huffington Post
    The media had lots of health care news to obsess about last week. A federal judge ruled the health care reform law unconstitutional, and Senate Republicans tried in vain to repeal the law. But most of the press paid virtually no attention to a potentially much more important development -- a multi-pronged effort by five major insurers to strip from the law key regulations and consumer protections that aren't to their liking.

  • Posted on Friday, February 11, 2011
    By James Fieseher, M.D. | Portsmouth (N.H.) Herald
    One of the major reasons that America is the only industrialized nation with a privatized for-profit health-care system is the fact that most Americans don't understand how it works. Most of us believe it's too complicated and doesn't seem to make sense, even though it's the only health care that we have ever known. Perhaps the best way to understand how private (non-government) health care works is to apply the concept to a government run service.

  • Posted on Friday, February 11, 2011
    By Susan Dugan | Washington Park (Colo.) Profile
    Health care activist Roya Brown views health care as a basic human right. Drawn first to Health Care for All Colorado, Brown recently founded Young HCAC, whose mission is to “get young people involved in educating, mobilizing and agitating ... to get mad about what is going on.”

  • Posted on Friday, February 11, 2011
    By Ezra Klein | The Washington Post
    Peter Shumlin, the newly elected governor of Vermont, has a plan for health-care reform: Rather than repeal it, he wants to supercharge it. His state will set up an exchange, and then, as soon as possible, apply for a waiver that allows it to turn the program into a single-payer system. I spoke with Shumlin this morning, and a lightly edited transcript of our conversation follows.

  • Posted on Friday, February 11, 2011
    By Josh Hoxie | The Defender
    With the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act last spring, those of us graduating in May won’t have to include losing health insurance on our long list of life-altering changes.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 10, 2011
    Wendell Potter is the former head of public relations for insurance giant Cigna. In 2009, he became a whistleblower, describing with an insider's knowledge the behavior of the health insurance industry. His book Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR Is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans documents those revelations. Potter spoke to Helen Redmond during a Chicago stop on his national book tour in January.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 10, 2011
    Eleven faith-based organizations have passed resolutions in support of HR 676/Medicare for All so far.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 10, 2011
    By Nancy Remsen | Burlington (Vt.) Free Press
    The woman who Gov. Peter Shumlin hired to guide his health reform effort presented lawmakers Tuesday with the administration’s roadmap — an 80-page bill — leading to a consolidated, publicly financed system that would provide medical coverage to all Vermonters.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 10, 2011
    By Business insider, Wall St. Cheat Sheet
    The business model of American health insurers is basically: try to get healthy customers as clients, and then resist as long as possible when it comes to paying out claims. That’s actually not an indictment or a criticism. It’s just the way our system works, and it’s screwed up. Whatever you feel about Obamacare, you probably think our current system needs reform in some sense. Below we present the posterboys of the problem. Top healthcare CEOs making millions, leading companies that deny you coverage.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 10, 2011
    By Margaret Flowers, MD | YES! Magazine
    Last month, fulfilling a campaign promise, Republicans in the House of Representatives voted to repeal “Obamacare.” The vote was primarily a symbolic gesture. House leadership knows repeal will not survive a vote in the Senate or a Presidential veto. But the Republican leadership is likely to attempt steps that would lead to a de facto repeal of the health law.

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 9, 2011
    By Aimee Miles | Kaiser Health News
    Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin, who was elected last November after promising to reform health care in the state, unveiled a bill Tuesday that would abolish most forms of private health insurance and move state residents into a publicly funded insurance pool.

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 9, 2011
    By Claudia Fegan, M.D. | Hyde Park Herald (Chicago)
    Many residents of Hyde Park work for large employers, the University of Chicago being just one example among several. In the wake of the new health law, what benefit changes can workers at these large companies expect to see?

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 8, 2011