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, November 30, 2010
    By Dr. Howie Wolf | Daily Camera (Boulder, Colo.)
    As a family physician that has practiced in Boulder County for 48 years, I feel our inadequate health care system is significantly closer to a "tipping point" than in 2006. I see more patients who are uninsured or underinsured, many due to layoffs in our sluggish economy and the inability of business owners to continue paying exorbitant costs to provide employees with health care benefits.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 23, 2010
    By MARGARET FLOWERS | Capital Times (Madison, Wis.)
    When it comes to health insurance coverage, Wisconsin receives a B in comparison to other states, but only because it’s graded on a curve. The state’s 9.5 percent uninsured rate falls considerably below the national average of 16.7, but that’s not much consolation to residents who remain uninsured or who are covered by skimpy policies with big deductibles and co-pays.

  • Posted on Monday, November 22, 2010
    By Ronald W. Pies, MD | Psychiatric Times
    Some see health care as a political or economic issue. They are correct, of course, on one level. But I believe that health care is fundamentally a moral issue; indeed, a matter of basic human rights. I do not believe that a nation as rich as ours (albeit with most wealth concentrated among the upper income levels) can shirk its moral responsibilities in the matter of providing basic health care for all its citizens. This doesn't mean that everybody who wants a face-lift should get one on the taxpayer's dime: I am talking about providing all citizens with the most basic health care, required to sustain life and limb. And, yes: I believe this is a right that any citizen may claim, particularly in a country purporting to be “civilized.”

  • Posted on Monday, November 22, 2010
    David McLanahan | Letters | The Seattle Times
    Skyrocketing health-care costs are a major component of our deficit and the new health-care legislation does little to change this trajectory. The best way to decrease the deficit would be to bring our health-care spending under control by enacting an improved and expanded Medicare for all, an equitable system similar to the rest of the industrialized world, where medical costs are half what we spend, with improved quality of care.

  • Posted on Monday, November 22, 2010
    By SHAWN DOHERTY | The Capital Times (Madison, Wis.)
    Dr. Margaret Flowers, a leader of the single-payer health care movement, was in town this week to drum up support for the Madison chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP). The Baltimore pediatrician was arrested on the floor of the U.S. Senate in 2009 during the health care hearings for trying to get a seat at the bargaining table. I decided to check out a couple of her events to see what she had to say now about the state of single-payer reform, commonly referred to as "Medicare for All."

  • Posted on Friday, November 19, 2010
    By Ezra Klein | The Washington Post
    Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has long supported state waivers in the health-care bill, and for a very specific reason: He'd like to see Vermont create the first single-payer system in the nation, as he believes it'll demonstrate enough cost and quality advantages that other states will want to follow suit. We spoke by phone last night, and a lightly edited transcript of our conversation follows.

  • Posted on Friday, November 19, 2010
    By Ellen R. Hale | Louisville Medicine
    Garrett Adams, MD, MPH, spent 40 years practicing medicine as a pediatrician, as chief of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, and as medical director of communicable diseases at the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness. In January, he will begin serving as the president of Physicians for a National Health Program. The Louisville Medicine Editorial Board drafted a list of questions for Dr. Adams.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010
    By Michael Moore | Open Mike Blog
    Yesterday, on the TV and radio show "Democracy Now" hosted by Amy Goodman, the former Vice President of CIGNA, one of the nation's largest health insurance companies, revealed that CIGNA met with the other big health insurers to hatch a plan to "push" yours truly "off a cliff."

  • Posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010
    By JOHN NICHOLS | The Cap Times
    If the Obama White House and congressional Democrats had listened to Dr. Margaret Flowers, they would have produced a single-payer “Medicare for All” health reform that would have excited the party’s progressive base. That base would have waded into the 2010 election campaign to defend real reform, closing the “enthusiasm gap” and changing the course of political history.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010
    By Margaret Flowers | The Charlotte Observer
    It's been said that a society can be judged by how it treats its most vulnerable. If that's the case, what can we say about today's United States?

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 17, 2010
    By Quentin Young, M.D. | The Huffington Post
    While it's clear from post-election surveys that having voted for "health care reform" was not a major cause of the Democrats' defeats, the new health law didn't help. What should have been a feather in the administration's cap - i.e. a genuine reform that guaranteed truly universal, comprehensive care - instead became an albatross.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 17, 2010
    by Margaret Brinich | The Lakewood (Ohio) Observer
    Premiums will continue to rise. More and more Ohioans will be priced out of the health care market. It’s not only a health care crisis, but a major contributor to the economic crisis. Lack of health insurance leads to lack of health care and a less-healthy working population. Ohio needs jobs. If Ohio had a comprehensive health care plan covering all citizens and the costs were known, prospective employers would be encouraged to start up new businesses or move businesses into Ohio. It’s in our economic self-interest.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010
    By James Pitkin | Willamette Week
    After President Obama and Democrats in Congess failed to even put universal single-payer health care on the table, progressive groups say they’ll bring a bill to the Oregon Legislature in 2011 that would establish that option in the state.

  • Posted on Monday, November 15, 2010
    By Danielle Martin and Irfan Dhalla | The Globe and Mail
    In poll after poll, Canadians reaffirm their commitment to a health-care system in which access is based on need rather than wealth. So it stands to reason that opening up medicare to a private second tier would be bad for people who have no choice but to rely on the public system. With a relatively fixed number of health-care providers, wait times in the public system would increase as staff were recruited to the private sector. From Australia to Zimbabwe, this scenario has unfolded repeatedly around the world.

  • Posted on Monday, November 15, 2010
    By Genie Ahders | The Faster Times
    President Obama was wrong. The recent mid-term election proved that this is how the American people felt. He tried to compromise too much. That was obvious when it came to health care reform. I can still see him walking into a meeting on health care legislation with Big Pharm and insurance company executives, literally by his side, and with his back to single payer advocates. He turned his back on the American people. And the deal was done. It was all finished. But it can’t be finished for those of us who support the only method of health care reform that will be fair to everyone — the single payer system.

  • Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010
    By Wendell Potter | Newsweek
    Conservatives who voted for congressional candidates because they pledged to repeal and replace the health-care-reform law are in for a rude awakening. Once those newly elected members of Congress have a little talk with the insurance industry’s lobbyists and executives, they will back off from that pledge. They will go through the motions, of course. They’ll hold hearings and take to the floor of both Houses to rail against the new law, and they’ll probably even introduce a bill to repeal it with much fanfare — but it will all be for show. That’s because health insurers, one of Republican candidates’ biggest and most reliable benefactors — the industry contributed three times as much money to Republicans as to Democrats since January — can’t survive without it.

  • Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010
    The following is an excerpt from an interview with Gov.-elect Peter Shumlin of Vermont conducted by a blogger at Green Mountain Daily (GMD).

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010
    Healthcare Technology News While healthcare reform came under fire in many parts of the country, a single payer system is very much on the horizon in Vermont.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010
    By ROBERT PUTSCH | Independent Record (Helena, Mont.)
    Medicaid covers four of 10 births in the U.S. and provides care for one in every three children. Montana can ill afford to expose at-risk families to denials and the profit-making focus of yet another health insurance company.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010
    Speaking in Maine | The Maine Public Broadcasting Network
    Audio of lecture by Dr. William Hsiao at Bates College

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010
    By Andrew D. Coates | The Daily Gazette (Schenectady, N.Y.)
    The Schenectady Free Health Clinic provides high-quality care to some 2,600 patients, about 18 percent of Schenectady County’s uninsured, free of charge. The need for the clinic is increasing.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 9, 2010
    By Timothy Shaw, M.D., F.A.C.S. | HEALTH REFORM WATCH
    Twenty years ago, upon entering private medical practice for the first time it took me about a month to realize that the United States needed “Health Care Reform.” After serving the previous fifteen years in the US Army Medical Corps, I started my first civilian medical job. I was asked to come to a hospital by another surgeon to perform an ear operation on a 3 year old boy at the same time as he would be performing an eye operation. This would save the child from two anesthetics on two different days. Since I had never worked at that hospital, and apparently in order to set me straight from the start, one of the head doctors at this hospital, came up to me in the preoperative holding area, and boldly shoved the child’s chart in my face, pointed to the child’s insurance (Medicaid (Welfare)) and shamelessly told me, “if all you are going to do, is to bring this “****” in here, then we don’t need you to come here.” The poor little guy sitting in the corner with his Mom, was smiling at us with his cute partially toothless grin, and coke-bottle glasses. He didn’t realize what one of his doctors called him because of his health insurance coverage.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 9, 2010
    By David Lazarus | Los Angeles Times
    Three of the biggest names in the insurance game reported rock-solid profits last week. Aetna said its third-quarter net income jumped 53% over the same period last year, to $497.6 million. WellPoint, parent of Anthem Blue Cross in California, said its profit rose 1.2% to $739.1 million. Health Net posted a net income of $62.7 million, compared with a loss of $66 million a year earlier.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 9, 2010
    Helen Redmond reports that the insurance industry has continued to win concessions from the Obama administration on how its health care law will be enforced.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 2, 2010
    By Carol A. Paris, MD | Psychiatric Times
    The essential feature of private insurance induced stress disorder (PIISD) is the development of characteristic symptoms following exposure to an insurance-induced traumatic stressor involving direct personal experience of an event or witnessing an event that threatens another person.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 2, 2010
    By Bob Cuddy | The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)
    These are gloomy days for those who believe President Barack Obama’s health care plan did not go far enough. The prevailing political wisdom is that he overreached, and there is talk of repealing the bill that he did sign should Republicans recapture Congress.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 2, 2010
    By Kailash Chand | Tribune Magazine The Institute for Fiscal Studies has exposed how the cuts proposed under the Comprehensive Spending Review will harm the economy as well as the most vulnerable in society. David Cameron and Nick Clegg continue to insist their proposals will create a fairer society. They intend to increase VAT, which is regressive, and say that they are doing this in the interest of fairness. They cut benefits to the poor and say this is in the interest of fairness. They cut child benefits and insist this is fair. They announce nearly 500,000 job losses, condemning many to life on the breadline, and claim this will lead to a better future.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 2, 2010
    By Susanne King, MD | The Berkshire Eagle
    On Nov. 2, you will be able to vote for "single-payer" health care if you live in the 2nd or 4th districts of Berkshire County. This referendum is non-binding, but will send a strong message to our legislators and governor.

  • Posted on Friday, October 29, 2010
    By Paul Millman | Burlington Free Press
    It's clear, and should be even to a nonbusinessman like Mr. Dubie, that the cost of health care has a much more profound effect on our ability to finance expansion than does the tax rate. I think this is what they call a no-brainer.

  • Posted on Tuesday, October 26, 2010
    By Adele M. Stan | AlterNet/The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute
    Win or lose, the Tea Party movement will come away from next week's elections triumphant, having injected into the Republican Party a group of candidates pledged to the dismantling of government and wed to the religious right. Of the movement's dozen favored candidates for U.S. Senate, all are anti-abortion, and five oppose it even in cases of rape and incest. Among their number are Colorado's Ken Buck, who has compared homosexuality to alcoholism, and Nevada's Sharron Angle, who wants to demolish both the Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency. Major GOP players, from political strategist Karl Rove to former Bush speechwriter David Frum, have fretted publicly over Tea Party extremism, with Frum complaining of the movement's "paranoid delusions."

  • Posted on Tuesday, October 26, 2010
    By Stewart Player and Colin Leys | Red Pepper
    Behind the technicalities, what do the government’s plans for the NHS really mean? Stewart Player and Colin Leys expose the reality of the health service white paper.

  • Posted on Tuesday, October 26, 2010
    By Edward B. Colby | Dedham (Mass.) Transcript
    Leo Stolbach says he’s working to advance a single-payer health insurance system for Massachusetts because he sees what’s happening to patients now.

  • Posted on Monday, October 25, 2010
    By Julian Pecquet | The Hill
    Doctors in Massachusetts think the state's healthcare overhaul — the model for Democrats' national reform law — was a poor choice, according to a new poll.

  • Posted on Monday, October 25, 2010
    By Saul Friedman | Time Goes By blog
    Who would have guessed that one of the most right-wing Republicans in the Senate would predict that the American people, sooner rather than later, will see the passage of single-payer, universal health care such as Medicare for All?

  • Posted on Friday, October 22, 2010
    By Michael Moore | Alternet
    I have a rule of thumb that's served me well my whole life: whenever corporate executives begin talking about how they support "free markets" and "competition," check to see if you still have your wallet.

  • Posted on Wednesday, October 20, 2010
    By Evan Tuchinsky | Paradise (Calif.) Post
    Last week I took an assignment from another newspaper to cover the Mad As Hell Doctors' appearance in Chico. The advocates for a single-payer system were completing a tour of California, and the capacity crowd at Harlan Adams Theater was the biggest they drew. They found a very receptive audience.

  • Posted on Wednesday, October 20, 2010
    Maine Public Broadcasting Network
    With health care costs high and rising, state lawmakers are trying to come up with new alternatives incorporating recent federal reform laws. Today in Augusta, a committee heard from a health care expert who says a single-payer system could save a billion dollars in Maine each year.

  • Posted on Wednesday, October 20, 2010
    By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Editor | Reuters
    Americans die sooner than citizens of a dozen other developed nations and the usual suspects -- obesity, traffic accidents and a high murder rate -- are not to blame, researchers reported on Thursday.

  • Posted on Monday, October 18, 2010
    By Richard Cranium | Daily Kos
    Yesterday, I was introduced to a socialized, government-run, single payer health care system that works. And it is working beautifully, right here in America.

  • Posted on Friday, October 15, 2010
    By Dr. Quentin Young | The Huffington Post
    As we approach Nov. 2, it's fair to say that in many ways the distortion of political discourse in our country has never been worse.

  • Posted on Friday, October 15, 2010
    By Margaret Flowers, M.D.
    The following article summarizes a Congressional Briefing held on Sept. 23, 2010, titled “An analysis of proposed changes to Medicare before the Deficit Commission and a better alternative: Improved Medicare for all.”

  • Posted on Thursday, October 14, 2010
    Single-payer health insurance is not a new concept, though it’s one that’s not always understood. It gets lumped into the term “government health care” and branded as “socialized medicine” like the national systems in, for example, Canada and Great Britain. However, as Dr. Paul Hochfeld noted, the proposals for the U.S. call for publicly funded, privately delivered care.

  • Posted on Wednesday, October 13, 2010
    By David Pepose | Berkshire Eagle
    Voters in the 2nd and 4th Districts will test the waters for single-payer health care in a ballot question in November’s elections.

  • Posted on Monday, October 11, 2010
    By Deborah Sederberg | The News Dispatch (Michigan City, Ind.)
    In early September, The News-Dispatch published a story about Dr. Rade Pejic’s presentation to Michigan City Rotary on his support for a single-payer national health care program. The paper also carried a copy of Pejic’s survey on the merits (or lack of them) of a one-payer system. Of the 41 responses, 95 percent favored a single-payer system.

  • Posted on Monday, October 11, 2010
    By WALLY RETAN | Birmingham News
    As a nation, we spent about $8,000 per person on health care last year. That includes premiums, co-payments, deductibles and out-of-pocket payments for what insurance didn't cover. That's also the money employers didn't put into paychecks because they sent it to an insurance company.

  • Posted on Wednesday, October 6, 2010
    By EDWARD P. EHLINGER, M.D. | Minneapolis Star Tribune
    Insurance is a great mechanism that people can use to offset their risk of losing some material thing of great value like their house, boat, car or jewelry. It can also be used to protect a valuable personal occupational asset like a voice for an opera singer, a hand for a surgeon or a knee for a football player. And it can be useful in providing protection from a singular catastrophic event like a malpractice suit or the premature loss of life. But for something that is predictable, ongoing, needed by everyone, or necessary for the welfare of our community, an insurance model makes absolutely no sense. That's why we don't use an insurance model to provide police or fire services or to provide an education to our children. For these we use the tax model. Basic essential health care should also be in this category.

  • Posted on Wednesday, October 6, 2010
    By Landon Hall | The Orange County Register
    Bill Honigman, an emergency-room doctor at Kaiser Permanente in Anaheim and Irvine, says the only way to make real progress on a health care overhaul is to get rid of private insurance companies altogether.

  • Posted on Tuesday, October 5, 2010
    By Julian Pecquet | The Hill
    Physicians who want a single-payer government health plan will be marching at Saturday's "One Nation Working Together" rally in Washington, D.C. While the main focus of the march will be on jobs and the economy, part of the rally's theme — "demanding the change we voted for" — relates to dissatisfaction with the health care reform law, according to Physicians for a National Health Program.

  • Posted on Tuesday, October 5, 2010
    By Carla Amurao | Santa Barbara Independent
    Last night, the Mad as Hell Doctors, a group of activist physicians and health care providers, marched across town in an effort to raise awareness about universal health care and calling “Obamacare” a bare-minimum reform. From Anapamu Street to Canon Perdido, the sound of drums and cheers filled the air while passersby honked their horns and offered high fives and other plaudits.

  • Posted on Tuesday, October 5, 2010
    The following interviews with three members of the Mad as Hell Doctors who are presently on a 24-city tour of California appeared in the Visalia (Calif.) Times-Delta, Oct. 2, 2010.

  • Posted on Monday, October 4, 2010
    By Dr. James C. Mitchiner | Ann Arbor News
    The announcement last month by the Census Bureau that the number of uninsured increased last year to a record 50.7 million individuals should come as no surprise to those who understand the uniquely American tradition of linking health insurance to employment.

  • Posted on Friday, October 1, 2010
    The following text contains the remarks of Dr. Quentin Young, national coordinator of Physicians for a National Health Program, at a session of the 40th legislative conference of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation in held in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 16.

  • Posted on Friday, October 1, 2010
    Christopher Stack, M.D. | Letter to the Editor | Indianapolis Star
    According to the Census Bureau, the number of uninsured rose by more than 4 million in 2009 to greater than 50 million nationwide. In Indiana, there are currently more than 900,000 uninsured, 14.2 percent of the population, including from 30 to 40 percent of those ages 21 to 26. A failing employer-based system now covers only 55.8 percent of the population, down from 64.2 percent in 2000.

  • Posted on Friday, October 1, 2010
    By Stephanie Innes | Arizona Daily Star
    Arizona voters in November could create their own law to keep the national health-care overhaul at bay when they vote on Proposition 106.

  • Posted on Wednesday, September 29, 2010
    Nancy Crumpacker, M.D. | Letters to the editor | The Oregonian
    Regence BlueCross BlueShield and other large insurers canceled their policies for children just before they would have had to accept any patient regardless of his or her medical condition. This confirms what we have long known: Since 20 percent of the population use up 90 percent of health care expenses in any given year, insurance companies make money by not insuring these costly patients.

  • Posted on Tuesday, September 28, 2010
    A presentation by Tsung-Mei Cheng at the Congressional briefing: “An Analysis of Proposed Changes to Medicare Before the Deficit Commission and a Better Alternative: Improved Medicare for All”

  • Posted on Monday, September 27, 2010
    The following contains the remarks of Olveen Carrasquillo, M.D., at a congressional briefing titled “An analysis of proposed changes to Medicare before the Deficit Commission and a better alternative: Improved Medicare for all” held in Washington on Sept. 23.

  • Posted on Monday, September 27, 2010
    By Anja Rudiger, National Economic and Social Rights Initiative, 2010

  • Posted on Friday, September 24, 2010
    By Henry Abrons | San Francisco Chronicle
    Looking at health insurance, the situation is truly dire. There was a dramatic spike in the uninsured - 4.3 million more, to a record 50.7 million - in spite of the expansion of government health insurance rolls by nearly 6 million.

  • Posted on Friday, September 24, 2010
    By John Driscoll | Times-Standard (Eureka, Calif.)
    In their pursuit of nationalized health care for everyone, Drs. Paul Hochfeld and Mike Huntington are under no illusions. They are swimming upstream.

  • Posted on Thursday, September 23, 2010
    By Puneet K. Sandhu | Comment, California Law Review
    With the employer-provided health care system eroding and prospects for a national solution dim, advocates of expanded access to health care are once again invoking the idea of a right to health care.

  • Posted on Thursday, September 23, 2010
    Gerald Gollin, M.D. | Redlands (Calif.) Daily Facts
    Our current patchwork system takes the taxpayer for a sucker by saddling the government with the responsibility of caring for the poorest and sickest in Medicaid, Medicare and the VA while leaving private insurers to profit from the rest. Most other industrialized countries have better health care outcomes than we do at a lower cost because the profit motive in insurance is minimized or absent due to some form of a single payer.

  • Posted on Thursday, September 23, 2010
    By Margaret DeRitter | Kalamazoo Gazette
    Dr. Quentin Young, national coordinator of PNHP, says that even if the new health law works as planned, the Congressional Budget Office has projected that about 50 million people will be uninsured for the next three years and about 23 million people will remain uninsured in 2019. The new Census report, he says, suggests that those projections are likely too low.

  • Posted on Wednesday, September 22, 2010
    By Michael McBane | The Hill Times
    Imagine a plan to provide all Canadians with prescription drug coverage. Imagine such a plan would cost Canadians billions less than we are currently spending on prescription drugs. Finally, imagine a federal government that actually believed in medicare and in expanding it to include prescription drugs. Well, two out of three is a good start.

  • Posted on Wednesday, September 22, 2010
    A public drug insurance plan should form an integral part of a country’s pharmaceutical policies. The plan must tie together social programs designed to provide a minimum of well-being for all citizens, health policies designed to optimize public health, industrial policies aimed at attracting foreign investment, intellectual property policies, and tax policies designed to ensure greater fairness in redistributing wealth.

  • Posted on Friday, September 17, 2010
    By JOHN M. BRYSON | Minneapolis Star-Tribune
    The emotional debates over health care reform in the United States last fall and again this election season are puzzling to my wife and me. We are professors who were on sabbatical leave in London from August 2009 through August 2010, so we missed last year's debates. While in the United Kingdom we were automatically covered by the National Health Service.

  • Posted on Friday, September 17, 2010
    By Aaron E. Carroll, M.D. | The Huffington Post
    Every year about this time, the census releases its yearly numbers on the uninsured. Every year, I write an op-ed or a blog post. Every year, I get a little more depressed.

  • Posted on Monday, September 13, 2010
    By Tsung-Mei Cheng | Health Affairs
    This interview makes it clear that in the Swiss system, which is based on private health insurance, the government nevertheless plays a big role. The minister said, when asked who set drug prices in the Swiss system: "I set the prices for drugs."

  • Posted on Monday, September 13, 2010
    By Duke Helfand | Los Angeles Times
    California regulators are seeking fines of up to $9.9 billion from health insurer PacifiCare over allegations that it repeatedly mismanaged medical claims, lost thousands of patient documents, failed to pay doctors what they were owed and ignored calls to fix the problems.

  • Posted on Friday, September 10, 2010
    By Bennett Hall | Corvallis (Ore.) Gazette Times, Sept. 8, 2010
    The loose-knit group of Oregon physicians who barnstormed the country last fall to promote a national health plan are planning another road trip, this time to California instead of Washington, D.C. “California’s ahead of the rest of the states, but there’s more than a dozen that are formulating their own bills as we speak,” said Mike Huntington, a retired radiation oncologist and one of two Corvallis physicians involved in organizing the Mad as Hell Doctors.

  • Posted on Wednesday, September 8, 2010
    By now most of you have heard the disappointing news that our bill, SB 810, the California Universal Health Care Act, was held on the Assembly Floor on the last night of session, effectively killing the measure until next year. Over my strong objections, Assembly leadership decided to hold the bill. Although we are greatly disappointed, we are determined to come back even stronger next year.

  • Posted on Tuesday, September 7, 2010
    By David Lazarus | Los Angeles Times, Sept. 7, 2010
    It seems increasingly clear that insurance exchanges and mandates won't do much to lower medical costs or guarantee adequate coverage to all. Most likely, we'll see insurers vying to offer the most bare-bones policies at the highest prices they can get away with. Some sort of Medicare-for-all program remains the only equitable way that every American can be provided with adequate and affordable coverage.

  • Posted on Wednesday, September 1, 2010
    Bob Balhiser | Letter to the Editor | Independent Record (Helena, Mont.)
    Max Baucus really talked up his so-called health care “debate” for well over a year. The fact is there was no “debate.” Max’s health care bill was principally written by Liz Fowler, a Baucus staffer and former V.P. of WellPoint, one of the largest health insurance companies in America.

  • Posted on Monday, August 30, 2010
    By Kay Tillow | All Unions Committee For Single Payer Health Care--HR 676
    On June 28, 2010, Honeywell locked out the 230 union workers at its uranium hexafluoride plant in Metropolis, an Ohio River town of 6,500 at the tip of southern Illinois 400 miles south of Chicago. A working class town nestled amidst the corn, soybean and wheat fields, Metropolis is known for its Superman statue on the court house square where most Illinois candidates, including Barack Obama, have stopped by for a photo op.

  • Posted on Friday, August 27, 2010
    By Clark Newhall | The Charlottetown Guardian
    I live in the U.S. 10 months of the year and in P.E.I. two months. From the election of Obama to the present, I have strongly advocated for medical care financed like Canada's medicare. We have your system in the U.S. and we, too, call it Medicare — but we Americans only have the right to decent health care if we are over 65. Our last best chance to achieve what you have achieved — person-based health care instead of money-maker medicine — disappeared when Obama could not or would not stand up to bottom-feeders like Limbaugh, Beck and the Drudge Report.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 26, 2010
    By David Rosenfeld | The Lund Report (Ore.)
    A loose coalition of single-payer advocates in Oregon has taken the first steps toward developing legislation for the 2011 session

  • Posted on Thursday, August 26, 2010
    By William Claiborne | Nieman Watchdog
    'Medicare for all' isn’t just an expression in Australia, it’s a reality, and there aren’t any death panels or government intervention in the choice of doctors or treatment. Bill Claiborne, a longtime Washington Post reporter now living in Australia, describes the system.

  • Posted on Monday, August 23, 2010
    Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) are today reaffirming their efforts to provide all Americans with health care that would allow access to the doctor of choice without premiums, co-pays or deductibles.

  • Posted on Monday, August 23, 2010
    By Saul Friedman | The Huffington Post
    It's not too late to observe and celebrate the 45th anniversary of Medicare, for it's a good occasion to wonder, in this time of economic distress, what life would have been like without it for the 45 million of us who are eligible because we are disabled or over 65.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 19, 2010
    By Austin Frakt | Kaiser Health News
    With the ambition of reducing the federal debt, Congressman Paul Ryan has offered a proposal to convert Medicare to a voucher-based program. Under the plan, in time all Medicare beneficiaries would receive program benefits from private plans subsidized by government payments (vouchers). In principle, such a system could reduce federal Medicare costs if the subsidy grows more slowly than medical inflation, shifting more of the costs to care to individuals. The history of Medicare and its politics suggest it is unlikely to work out that way.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 19, 2010
    By PAUL KRUGMAN | The New York Times
    One depressing aspect of American politics is the susceptibility of the political and media establishment to charlatans. You might have thought, given past experience, that D.C. insiders would be on their guard against conservatives with grandiose plans. But no: as long as someone on the right claims to have bold new proposals, he’s hailed as an innovative thinker. And nobody checks his arithmetic.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 19, 2010
    Richard A. Damon, M.D. | Queen City News | Letter to the Editor
    The four basic system problems that exist in current U.S. health care – costs, affordability, access and quality of care – are intricately related to the alliance of the five biggest players in our failed health care model, namely (a) the insurance industry, (b) the drug industry, (c) the hospital industry, (d) business (e) and organized medicine.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 19, 2010
    By Kevin Drum | Mother Jones
    Starting in 2014 insurance companies will no longer be allowed to discriminate against people with preexisting conditions. They'll have to take all comers for (almost) the same price, regardless of how healthy they are.

  • Posted on Monday, August 16, 2010
    By GAIL COLLINS | The New York Times
    The story in American history I most like to tell is the one about how women got the right to vote 90 years ago this month. It has everything. Adventure! Suspense! Treachery! Drunken legislators! But, first, there was a 70-year slog.

  • Posted on Monday, August 16, 2010
    By Ethan Parke | Vermont for Single Payer Supporter, Montpelier
    Throughout Hsiao’s presentation, what came clear was that in order to control costs and to make health care universal, there must be a rational system. Right now Vermont only has a patchwork of unaffordable insurance based on adverse selection, various government programs, problematic fee-for-service provider compensation, and fragmented financing, Hsiao said.

  • Posted on Friday, August 13, 2010
    Anne Scheetz, M.D. | Letter to the Editor | Chicago Tribune
    Private insurance companies may, on paper, pay physicians substantially more than Medicare, but this must be taken in the context that Medicare actually pays the rates it publishes and pays on time, while private insurance companies subject physicians to a maze of voluntary and involuntary discounts, denials, delays and underpayments that make calculation of what physicians actually get impossible.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 12, 2010
    By Jane Bryant Quinn | CBS Moneywatch
    You have to leave the country to get a proper perspective on the high cost of health care in the United States. Even if it’s just over the border.

  • Posted on Wednesday, August 11, 2010
    By Noam N. Levey | Los Angeles Times
    Leaders of Cigna, Humana, UnitedHealth, WellPoint and Aetna received nearly $200 million in compensation in 2009, according to a report, while the companies sought rate increases as high as 39%.

  • Posted on Tuesday, August 10, 2010
    By Beverly Alves
    During our lifetime, many of us will face life-threatening or life altering illnesses or injuries, or perhaps we will watch those we love face them. Everyone is going to pass from this world (hopefully to a better place). We need a system in place that can provide support, guidance and direction to those who are facing these challenges. This system is called palliative care.

  • Posted on Monday, August 9, 2010
    By Johnathon S. Ross | Toledo Blade
    Medicare, which just turned 45, is a uniquely American program that should have been the model for health reform: no overwhelming bills, no denial of services, no limitations on what hospital patients can use or what doctor they can see.

  • Posted on Monday, August 9, 2010
    By Claudia Chaufan, M.D. | Santa Cruz Sentinel
    As Medicare celebrated its 45th anniversary July 30, the White House sent its present: a Deficit Commission, composed by some of the very folks who were unable, or unwilling, to see the $8 trillion housing bubble that brought the financial system to a halt. Nope. It's no joke: these folks are now at the forefront of the campaign to "save" Medicare and the budget.

  • Posted on Thursday, August 5, 2010
    By Quentin Young | Chicago Tribune
    Medicare, one of our nation's most cherished social programs, turned 45 last week. I was in active medical practice on July 30, 1965, when Medicare was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. Its impact on older Americans and their families was swift and spectacular. I saw the results with my own eyes.

  • Posted on Tuesday, August 3, 2010
    By John Nichols | The Nation
    Forty-five years ago today, on July 30, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson flew to Independence, Missouri, to mark a milestone in the long struggle to establish healthcare as a right, not a privilege, for all Americans.

  • Posted on Tuesday, August 3, 2010
    By Michael Corcoran | truthout | Op-Ed
    The grassroots single-payer movement in Vermont reflects the growing belief that the fight to make health care a human right must come from the states. But will the passage of federal reform get in the way?

  • Posted on Monday, August 2, 2010
    By Dr. Carol Paris | South Maryland Newspapers
    July 30 marks the 45th birthday of the Medicare program. Since the passage of this landmark legislation in 1965, Medicare has substantially lowered poverty among the elderly in our country, reducing the dilemma of having to choose between buying needed health care or buying groceries. While the cost of health care keeps rising, the cost is rising more slowly for those on Medicare than for those with private health insurance.

  • Posted on Monday, August 2, 2010
    By Joseph Birnbaum | Times Herald-Record (Middletown, N.Y.)
    Despite the valuable controls being put in place to prevent the insurance companies from denying and limiting needed care, the fact remains that Big Insurance and Big Pharma (the medical/industrial complex) are still in firm control of our health-care system and will still be able to spend 25-35 percent (or more) of your health-care dollars on management, marketing and huge administrative salaries.

  • Posted on Monday, August 2, 2010
    By Susanne L. King | The Berkshire (Mass.) Eagle
    Say "Happy Birthday" to Medicare, signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson 45 years ago, on July 30, 1965. This national program provides health insurance coverage for everyone 65 years and older, regardless of income or health status, as well as covering people with disabilities. Our senior citizens love Medicare, which, along with Social Security, has substantially lowered poverty among the elderly, providing a secure safety net for our most vulnerable citizens.

  • Posted on Sunday, August 1, 2010
    HOWARD A. GREEN, MD | Letters To The Editor | Palm Beach Post
    Americans should celebrate this 45th anniversary of Medicare.

  • Posted on Friday, July 30, 2010
    The following text is an open letter to the single-payer community from Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio, Rep. John Conyers Jr. of Michigan and Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. It was released on the eve of Medicare’s 45th anniversary.

  • Posted on Friday, July 30, 2010
    By CHRISTINE ADAMS | Houston Chronicle
    Today marks the 45th birthday of Medicare, the public insurance program that guarantees basic medical coverage to all seniors and people with severe disabilities regardless of their income, health status or where they live.