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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 Monday, December 28, 2009
    By Donna Smith | Commondreams.org
    So, all the great fanfare and all the king's horses. The great and almighty U.S. Senate has spoken. I will have to buy private health insurance -- forever, amen. The defective product that has left me wanting for real healthcare for all of my adult life is now a step closer to being the law of the land.

  • Posted on Monday, December 28, 2009
    By National Nurses United
    The 150,000 member National Nurses United, the nation's largest union and professional organization of registered nurses in the U.S., criticized the healthcare bill now advancing in the U.S. Senate saying it is deeply flawed and grants too much power to the giant insurers.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 23, 2009
    By Rose Ann DeMoro | The Huffington Post
    After all the fanfare and high expectations that accompanied the prospect of national health care reform at the outset of this year, the legislation is staggering to a particularly inglorious end.

  • Posted on Friday, December 18, 2009
    By DANIEL BARLOW | Times Argus (Barre, Vt.)
    U.S. Sen. Bernard Sanders was expecting to make history Wednesday. Instead, his amendment to create a single-payer health care system was used as a tool by Senate Republicans to create gridlock in the chamber as they sought to derail the health care reform plans of Democrats and President Barack Obama.

  • Posted on Friday, December 18, 2009
    By Deborah L. Shelton | Chicago Tribune
    A widening gulf in the health status of blacks and whites in Chicago comes even as disparities between the two races nationally have remained relatively constant, a new study has found.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 17, 2009
    By Athena Godet-Calogeras, Peter Mott and Andrew Coates | The Buffalo News
    You might think that all of us who have worked so long and so hard for comprehensive and affordable health care would be jumping with joy at the recent passage of a House bill and the opening of the Senate debate on health insurance reform. Not so.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 17, 2009
    By Susan Heavey | Reuters
    Nearly 20 percent of the U.S. population -- or almost 60 million people -- went without health insurance at some point since January 2008, according to government estimates released Wednesday.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 17, 2009
    By Glenn Greenwald | Salon.com
    Of all the posts I wrote this year, the one that produced the most vociferous email backlash -- easily -- was this one from August, which examined substantial evidence showing that, contrary to Obama's occasional public statements in support of a public option, the White House clearly intended from the start that the final health care reform bill would contain no such provision and was actively and privately participating in efforts to shape a final bill without it.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 17, 2009
    By Emily P. Walker | MedPage Today
    Sanders said his amendment would save $350 billion in administrative expenses by eliminating private insurance companies from the picture.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 17, 2009
    I am here to share my reformed and informed belief that Senate Bill 400 is by far the best way to provide high-quality, affordable, accessible healthcare to all Pennsylvanians at a cost to practically all of us that is less than what we currently pay.

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 15, 2009
    The following letter to Washington Post columnist David Broder from Dr. Ray Bellamy of Florida discusses not only Broder’s recent arguments, but also those of Dr. Atul Gawande at The New Yorker

  • Posted on Monday, December 14, 2009
    The following radio interview with Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program and professor at Harvard Medical School, took place on the morning of Dec. 9 with an affiliate of Los Angeles-based KPFK Pacifica.

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    By Margaret Flowers
    On International Human Rights Day, Dec. 10, health professionals and patients delivered cardboard cutout “bodies” to selected U.S. senators here to make visible the number of people who die in the senators’ home states because the nation does not have Medicare for all.

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    By Donna Smith | CommonDreams
    As my grandmother used to say, “I was born on a weekend but not last weekend.” The latest insult to Americans hungry for a bit of healthcare justice for all comes from the news that the Senate health bill now allows insurance companies to place annual limits on payments for some catastrophic illnesses, like cancer.

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    by Matt Schlobohm | Public Policy & Poltical Mobilization Director, Maine AFL-CIO
    On Friday October 23, 2009 the delegates at the Maine AFL-CIO’s 27th Biennial Convention unanimously passed a resolution calling on the AFL-CIO to convene, after the current healthcare reform process in Congress concludes, a democratic strategic planning process to develop a long term strategy to win Single Payer national health insurance.

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    By Jeff Muskus | The Huffington Post
    While Democratic leaders abandoned the public option on Thursday, one senator reignited his push for an amendment that would allow states to test-pilot single-payer health insurance systems.

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    By MIMI KOREN | Sound and Town Report
    A Mamaroneck physician believes that a single-payer plan would be the only effective way to reform the nation’s health system. Early this week she denounced the reform bills passed by the House of Representatives and now up for debate in the Senate. “I don’t think [they] will fix things,” said Dr. Elizabeth Rosenthal. “The best thing to do [would be] scrap them both and do single-payer. But it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen.”

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    From Dr. Laura Boylan
    I was arrested this morning in an act of peaceful civil disobedience along with a diverse group of seven others, including a medical student and a nurse, similarly passionate about Medicare for All. Ours was one of 17 actions organized by Mobilization for Health Care for All across the country to honor International Human Rights Day. We blocked the doors to Sen. Charles Schumer’s office building.

  • Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009
    By Steffie Woolhandler and David Himmelstein | New York Times, Room for Debate blog
    Milk and lemon both taste good in tea. But mix them together and it’s a curdled mess. Similarly, the latest Senate health reform compromise combines two appetizing elements — a Medicare expansion and tighter insurance regulations –- to create a noxious brew.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009
    By Luke Mitchell | Harper's Magazine
    The idea that there is a competitive “private sector” in America is appealing, but generally false. No one hates competition more than the managers of corporations. Competition does not enhance shareholder value, and smart managers know they must forsake whatever personal beliefs they may hold about the redemptive power of creative destruction for the more immediate balm of government intervention. This wisdom is expressed most precisely in an underutilized phrase from economics: regulatory capture.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009
    By Susan Cloke | Opinion | Santa Monica Mirror
    Santa Monica physicians Matt Hendrickson, Gene Oppenheim, Geoff White, Nancy Greep and Steve Tarzynski, joining thousands of American physicians frustrated by insurance companies getting in the way of providing good care for patients, started a Santa Monica chapter of PNHP. Sheila Kuehl, the author of the groundbreaking bill for single payer in CA, twice passed by both houses of the CA legislature and twice vetoed by Governor Schwarzenegger, spoke at their first event.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009
    By Bob Cesca | Huffington Post
    The fact remains that the private health insurance system is broken and America is being left behind by the rest of the world as we cling to the decaying wreckage of a failed healthcare system. Medicare is an obvious solution.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009
    By Kennedy Elliott | Medill Reports
    He approves the swine flu vaccine, sings to his patients and said he may be one of few people to have been uninvited to the White House. Dr. David Scheiner, President Barack Obama’s former physician, has been serving the Hyde Park community for more than 20 years.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 9, 2009
    By Ashley Smith
    The battle for health care reform is heating up in Congress. The House has already passed one bill, and the Senate is debating another version. But as Dr. Andy Coates explains, both bills will fail in solving the health care crisis--and, in fact, place a greater financial burden than ever on working people.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 9, 2009
    By HELEN REDMOND | Counterpunch
    Already defenders and apologists for the Democrat’s health care legislation are busy at work. In the next few weeks they will be working overtime to persuade, cajole, shame and ruthlessly attack if necessary, anyone opposing health care legislation. They’ll reserve special hysteria, invective and contempt for those of us who continue to support a single-payer, national health care system. And because it is the holiday season, we will be called heartless health care Grinches and silly, single payer, Bernie Sanders Scrooges.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 9, 2009
    By Tim Gaynor | Reuters
    Three nurses unions merged on Monday to form the largest-ever labor organization for U.S. medical professionals, which is expected to wield greater clout in collective bargaining and the national healthcare debate.

  • Posted on Monday, December 7, 2009
    by Philip Caper | CommonDreams.org
    As health care reform legislation enters a critical phase in Congress, it's important to keep our eye on the ball -- elements essential to the success of any reform effort. In order to define those elements, we must have a clear understanding of the nature of the pathology in our dysfunctional health care system.

  • Posted on Monday, December 7, 2009
    By ROB KIEFNER | Concord (N.H.) Monitor
    Amid chaos, misinformation and misunderstanding, the health care reform bill was nudged through the House of Representatives by the narrowest of margins. By not letting the facts get in the way of their blustering arguments, wacky lawmakers from both sides of the aisle offered lots of hype and heft, at times bench pressing the actual 2,100-page document to underscore the strength of their positions.

  • Posted on Monday, December 7, 2009
    By Hirsh Cohen | Business Courier of Cincinnati
    The latest numbers are staggering. A new Harvard study in the American Journal of Public Health reports that nearly 45,000 deaths occur each year in the U.S. because of the lack of health insurance. That’s a death every 12 minutes.

  • Posted on Monday, December 7, 2009
    By Sylvia Thompson and Iyah Romm | The Huffington Post
    If Massachusetts is going to be a model for reform, we must consider both the successes and failures of the past three years. It has become painfully obvious both in our studies and clinical practice that coverage does not equal care. Despite boasting the strongest primary care workforce in the country, the newly-insured in Massachusetts report waiting months for appointments. Meanwhile, the Connector has added 4.5 percent overhead to the already crushing administrative costs of our private insurance companies.

  • Posted on Monday, December 7, 2009
    By Donna Smith | CommonDreams.org
    The idea of a Medicare-for-All-type, single-payer health care system will be heard on the Senate floor. Late last evening, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont filed Senate Amendment No. 2837, and there are two additional original co-sponsors of this amendment, Senator Roland Burris of Illinois and Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio.

  • Posted on Friday, December 4, 2009
    By D. Brad Wright | Huffington Post
    We've come to the end of the health care costs world tour and conclude today with a look at the price of three prescription drugs: Plavix, Nexium, and Lipitor. Please note that the $0 for the U.S. Medicare figures are outdated--I guess that Part D didn't report to this group or something. But the rest of the numbers are interesting.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 3, 2009
    Summary: This amendment would establish a single payer health insurance system that would cover every person legally residing in the United States. The single payer system would be regulated and funded by the federal government through a payroll tax and an income tax, but it would be administered by the states. It would replace the coverage and revenue titles of the current bill, but it would leave in place most of the provisions in the quality, prevention, and workforce titles of the bill. This amendment starts from the premise that health care is a human right, and that every citizen, rich or poor, should have access to health care, just as every citizen has access to the fire department, the police, or public schools.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 2, 2009
    By Michael J. Klag | Johns Hopkins Public Health Magazine
    I have to find a new doctor. Last month, my primary care physician wrote me a letter. He said he was leaving private practice. He’s an outstanding physician—a doctor’s doctor whom I’ve known since he was a medical student. His reason for closing up shop? The sheer frustration of getting paid by private insurance companies.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 2, 2009
    CLAUDIA CHAUFAN | Letter to the Editor | San Francisco Chronicle
    In the Netherlands, the recently introduced for-profit insurance applies only to a small portion of services, and the results are mixed at best. As money is diverted from care to advertising, health care needs go unmet, and costs are steadily rising, as is popular discontent.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 2, 2009
    By Igor Volsky | The Wonk Room, Think Progress
    Tomorrow is the the 44th anniversary of Medicare, a government-sponsored health care program that provides health coverage to virtually all of the nation’s elderly and a large share of people with disabilities. While Medicare is not without its problems, it has dramatically improved access to health care, allowed seniors to live longer and healthier lives, contributed to the desegregation of southern hospitals, and has become one of the most popular government programs.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 2, 2009
    Steffie Woolhandler & David U. Himmelstein | Letter to the Editor | Orlando Sentinel
    Congressman Cliff Stearns in his My Word column Tuesday ("Use facts in health-care debate") repeats misinformation spread by a conservative think-tank about our study that found that nearly 45,000 Americans die annually because they lack health insurance.

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 1, 2009
    Massachusetts Joint Comittee on Public Health
    Thank you, Madame Chair and Members of the Committee for the opportunity to testify this morning. My name is Iyah Romm, and I am a medical student at Boston University School of Medicine. I also serve as a national leader of the American Medical Student Association (AMSA), where I am the New England Regional Director and Co-Chair of the Health Care for All Steering Committee.

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 1, 2009
    Allison Kilkenny | The Huffington Post
    Dr. Julio Frenk, Executive Director for Evidence and Information for Policy at WHO says: "It is especially beneficial to make sure that as large a percentage as possible of the poorest people in each country can get insurance...Insurance protects people against the catastrophic effects of poor health. What we are seeing is that in many countries, the poor pay a higher percentage of their income on health care than the rich."

  • Posted on Monday, November 30, 2009
    Editorial | The Nation
    This is not what democracy looks like. When Americans vote, by overwhelming majorities, to place control of the executive and legislative branches in the hands of a party that has promised fundamental change, they are supposed to get that change. They are not supposed to watch as a handful of self-interested and special-interested senators prevent progress by exploiting the arcane rules of the less representative of our two legislative chambers--rules requiring that not a majority but a supermajority be attained in order even to discuss necessary reforms, and that a similar supermajority be in place to thwart a filibuster.

  • Posted on Monday, November 30, 2009
    By Lori A. Carter | Press-Democrat
    John Shearer, a Petaluma physician for more than 40 years and outspoken advocate for health care, died Nov. 18 only a few weeks after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He was 77.

  • Posted on Monday, November 30, 2009
    DR. PETER MAHR | Letters to the editor | The Oregonian
    The current federal health reform legislation's answer is to insure most Americans by mandating citizens buy private insurance. Unfortunately the private insurance industry and its related bureaucracy and administration waste $400 billion a year and leave many millions more underinsured and laden with medical bills.

  • Posted on Monday, November 30, 2009
    Jane Slaughter | Labor Notes
    Its been a frustrating year for supporters of single-payer health care reform–Medicare for all. They protested as their proposal, which they call the most comprehensive, humane, and economical solution to the health care mess, was sidelined from the get-go. Their jaws dropped as the Houses health care bill, which subsidizes the insurance industry by forcing almost everyone to buy insurance, with government help, was dubbed socialistand fascist.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 25, 2009
    By Kevin Gosztol | Op-ed News
    On the day before Thanksgiving, members of single payer advocacy organizations gathered for a press conference to voice strong concerns with a Democratic health bill that they feel fails to address the biggest problems with health care in America.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 25, 2009
    Ryan Grim | Huffington Post
    The insurance industry successfully fought off a Senate threat to revoke its antitrust exemption as part of health care reform, but the issue lives to fight one more battle in the conference committee negotiations that will take place between the two chambers.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 24, 2009
    By HELEN REDMOND | Counterpunch
    I get weekly emails from Levana Layendecker of Health Care for America Now (HCAN) and Mitch Stewart from Organizing for America. In increasingly shrill prose, the two try to convince me to support whatever legislation emerges from Congress. They warn, “IF THE INSURANCE COMPANIES WIN, YOU LOSE.” I agree completely. That is why I won’t support any legislation Congress passes because the insurance companies have already won and we have lost.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 24, 2009
    By Greg Albo
    An interview with Colin Leys: Colin Leys lives in London. He is an emeritus professor of political studies and co-editor of the annual publication, the ‘Socialist Register’. He is currently active in the fight against the privatization of Britain’s National Health Service.

  • Posted on Monday, November 23, 2009

    Donald Broder | New York Times | Letter to the Editor
    We have forgotten our basic American value of looking out for one another. Would we support the idea of a fire or police department that provided help only to those who had a “Cadillac” protection plan? I don’t think so.



  • Posted on Monday, November 23, 2009

    Two online tools from The New York Times and the Kaiser Family Foundation



  • Posted on Monday, November 23, 2009
    By Stephen Janis | Investigative Voice
    Sitting in the Common Ground coffee shop in Hampden Friday afternoon, pediatrician Eric Naumberg displays the low-key mannerisms of a doctor who could heal the sick simply by imparting a bit of his own personal serenity.

  • Posted on Monday, November 23, 2009
    By Drs. David Himmelstein and Steffie Woolhandler | The following letter was submitted to the Washington Post
    The constituency for maintaining reproductive choice will be broad if middle-class women rely on the same system as the poor and near-poor. Because the new Medicaid and subsidized coverage will go to lower-income people, the middle class has little reason to be threatened by restrictions on abortions in that coverage. The lifeboat is kept in better repair if everyone -- rich and poor alike -- must rely upon it.

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    By Robert Reich | Salon
    First there was Medicare for all 300 million of us. But that was a nonstarter because private insurers and Big Pharma wouldn't hear of it, and Republicans and "centrists" thought it was too much like what they have up in Canada -- which, by the way, cost Canadians only 10 percent of their GDP and covers every Canadian. (Our current system of private for-profit insurers costs 16 percent of GDP and leaves out 45 million people.)

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    By Ida Hellander, MD

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    By SACHA PFEIFFER | WBUR Radio / NPR
    A new Harvard study finds that computerized medical records don’t save money or make hospitals more efficient, despite claims that health information technology could generate huge financial returns.

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    By Susan Heavey | Reuters
    New electronic record systems installed in thousands of U.S. hospitals have done little to rein in skyrocketing healthcare costs, Harvard University researchers said in a study released on Friday.

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    Jeoffry B.Gordon, M.D., M.P.H. | The New York Times
    Your editorial on the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendation against routine screening mammograms for healthy, low-risk women under the age of 50 takes a wise and balanced view. Nonetheless, this controversy has demonstrated a broad national consensus about the value of breast cancer screening. After practicing family medicine for nearly 30 years, I would observe that a critical aspect of this issue has been totally ignored: the deadly impact of lack of health insurance.

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    Editorial | Berkshire Eagle
    On Veterans Day, America honors those who fought in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and other war zones, as well as World War I, which is passing deeper into history and is represented by only one surviving American veteran. America should also take this opportunity to assess if current veterans are being well-treated by the nation they serve, which means sending them to fight only in justifiable wars and providing them whatever health care they require. In this area, we can and must do a lot better.

  • Posted on Friday, November 20, 2009
    By Ann Settgast, M.D., and Elizabeth Frost, M.D. | Minnesota Medicine
    As physicians, we are troubled by the direction of federal health care reform. Whether via a public health insurance option or an insurance mandate, the proposals on the table build on the structure of our broken system—the most costly, fragmented, and bureaucratic in the world.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 19, 2009
    By KATHARINE Q. SEELYE | New York Times
    Representative John Conyers Jr., Democrat of Michigan and the second-most senior member of the House, today ripped into President Obama and Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, accusing them of “bowing down” to “nutty right-wing” proposals just to get a health care bill passed.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 19, 2009
    By Jason Pramas | Editorial | Open Media Boston
    I think it would behoove small business organizations to think hard about this issue. Because, even as I write, a really bad national plan that leaves giant insurance companies firmly in the drivers seat of American health are policy has been pushed through the House of Representatives and is on its way to the Senate for a vote - where it very well may get shot down.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 19, 2009
    Kaiser Family Foundation
    A new issue brief from the Kaiser Family Foundation examines health reform and access to coverage for abortion services, a subject that has become one of the most discussed elements of the reform debate. The paper explains current law regarding abortion coverage, discusses the treatment of coverage for abortion services under the major health reform bills under consideration in Congress, and explores the possible impact of the House-passed legislation on public and private coverage for abortion services.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 17, 2009
    By CARLA K. JOHNSON (AP)
    Uninsured patients with traumatic injuries, such as car crashes, falls and gunshot wounds, were almost twice as likely to die in the hospital as similarly injured patients with health insurance, according to a troubling new study.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 17, 2009
    By ALAN NASSER | Counterpunch
    The liberal imagination has broadened the scope of what it wants to dismiss as unrealistic, utopian and unpragmatic, i.e. as for all practical purposes impossible. These claims have typically been accompanied by the assurance that “This is not something that Americans would go for – it’s not the American way.” There are countless variations on this theme. Obama’s case against a single payer health care system is a conspicuous case in point. What distinguishes Obama’s position on this issue is not merely the weakness of his “arguments”, but the straight-ahead factual falsehood of the some of the counterclaims he has put forward in order to turn the desirable into the impossible.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 17, 2009
    By Howard Waitzkin | Taos News
    A single-payer health program basically would extend Medicare to the entire population. Although Medicare is not without problems, people over 65 years of age widely support the system and express satisfaction with it.

  • Posted on Monday, November 16, 2009
    By Carol Miller | Albuquerque Journal
    A very complex, mandatory private insurance scheme recently passed the U.S. House. The public is being overwhelmed by sound bites on one hand about how great it is, on the other, how terrible. We are hearing few of the details that are actually in the bill. Having read the bill, it is clear now that what started as health reform has emerged from the political process as health "deform," building on the worst, not the best of the current system.

  • Posted on Monday, November 16, 2009
    By ROBERT PEAR | New York Times
    In the official record of the historic House debate on overhauling health care, the speeches of many lawmakers echo with similarities. Often, that was no accident.

  • Posted on Monday, November 16, 2009
    By David S. Hilzenrath | Washington Post
    Nobody wants to spend a lot of time and energy -- and taxpayer money -- and end up where they started. But that's what could happen with one of the principal elements of health reform, the "exchange" or "gateway."

  • Posted on Monday, November 16, 2009
    By Diana Novak | In These Times
    Since September 29, when Mobilization for Health Care for All organized its first sit-in at health insurer Aetna’s New York City offices, more than 147 activists with the group have been arrested in 24 actions around the country. Protesters, opposed to any healthcare reform short of a national single-payer system, have also occupied both Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s office in San Francisco and Senator Joe Lieberman’s office on Capitol Hill.

  • Posted on Monday, November 16, 2009
    By National Nurses Movement | Daily Kos
    Does passage of a bill that funnels millions of additional Americans into the private insurance system, and the decision of House leaders to shut down debate on one single payer amendment and scuttle another, mean the end of the years of efforts by single payer activists to win the most comprehensive reform of all? For the nation's nurses and the many grassroots activists, the answer is clearly no.

  • Posted on Monday, November 16, 2009
    By Dr. Susie Baldwin | Published on RHRealityCheck.org
    The House health care reform bill, the “Affordable Health Care for America Act,” won’t actually create affordable health care for America. It will perpetuate our existing inefficient, often inhumane health care system, one that spends twice as much as any other nation on earth yet fails to meet the basic needs of many individuals and communities. The convoluted logic of our existing health insurance-based system is echoed in the cumbersome pages of HR 3962.

  • Posted on Friday, November 13, 2009
    Prepared by the Committees on Ways & Means, Energy & Commerce, and Education & Labor


  • Posted on Friday, November 13, 2009
    Healthcare-NOW!
    On Saturday, November 7, 2009, the House passed H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act, to much celebration by the Democratic party. Healthcare-NOW!'s view, however, is that the House bill is a gift to the insurance industry at the further expense of the people of this nation.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 12, 2009
    By Jonathan Cohn | The New Republic
    Critics have complained that a drug industry got a sweetheart deal when it struck a bargain with the White House and Senate Finance Committee over health care reform. There's new reason to think those critics were right.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 12, 2009
    By Jonathan Cohn | The New Republic
    It was September 2008, at a town hall in Virginia, where Obama was offering a preview of how he intended to conduct his presidency. He would change the way Washington works, make it transparent, and, in so doing, deliver what the American public needed--starting with affordable health insurance. But, just a few months later, Obama's team was doing exactly what he said his administration wouldn't do: negotiating behind closed doors. The subject, sure enough, was health reform. The partner was the drug industry. By June, they had a deal.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 12, 2009
    John A. Day, Jr., M.D. | American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
    With the election of Barack Obama as our 44th President and the installation of a new United States Congress has come renewed attention to health care reform. Appropriately, there is a sense of urgency regarding the 47 million Americans without health insurance and the millions more underinsured, and to make matters worse, it is inevitable that both numbers will increase due to rising unemployment. In response to this crisis, most health care reform proposals attempt to guarantee at least some health coverage for all Americans. Yet nearly all proposals achieve this aim in large part through the current private insurance system. It is well worth asking: exactly what value does the insurance industry bring to health care in this country? And if it contributes little of consequence, is there another way?

  • Posted on Thursday, November 12, 2009
    Agence France Presse (AFP) News
    The number of US veterans who died in 2008 because they lacked health insurance was 14 times higher than the US military death toll in Afghanistan that year, according to a new study.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 11, 2009
    By Elyse Siegel | The Huffington Post
    According to a study released by the Harvard Medical School, 2,266 veterans under the age of 65 died last year as a result of not having health insurance. Researchers emphasize that "that figure is more than 14 times the number of deaths (155) suffered by U.S. troops in Afghanistan in 2008, and more than twice as many as have died (911 as of Oct. 31) since the war began in 2001."

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 11, 2009
    Amy Goodman | Democracy Now
    On Veterans Day, a new study estimates four times as many US Army veterans died last year because they lacked health insurance than the total number of US soldiers who were killed in Iraq and Afghanistan in the same period. A research team at Harvard Medical School says 2,266 veterans under the age of 65 died in 2008 because they were uninsured. We speak to the report's co-author, Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, professor of medicine at Harvard University and co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 10, 2009
    By Viji Sundaram | New America Media
    Lack of health insurance claimed the lives of more than 2,266 veterans under the age of 65 last year, says a Harvard Medical School study out today. That number is more than 14 times the number of deaths (155) suffered by U.S. troops in Afghanistan in 2008, and twice as many (911 as of Oct. 31) as have died since the war began in 2003.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 10, 2009
    Of all the torrent of words that followed House passage of its version of healthcare reform legislation in early November, perhaps the most misleading were those comparing it to enactment of Social Security and Medicare.

  • Posted on Monday, November 9, 2009
    By Marcia Angell, M.D. | The Huffington Post
    Well, the House health reform bill -- known to Republicans as the Government Takeover -- finally passed after one of Congress's longer, less enlightening debates. Two stalwarts of the single-payer movement split their votes; John Conyers voted for it; Dennis Kucinich against. Kucinich was right.

  • Posted on Monday, November 9, 2009
    Medical News Today
    On the eve of what would have been the first national vote on single-payer legislation Rep. Anthony Weiner's single-payer/Medicare for all amendment was withdrawn Friday, November 6.

  • Posted on Monday, November 9, 2009
    By Patti Singer | Rochester (N.Y.) Democrat And Chronicle
    The day before the much-anticipated vote on health care reform in the House of Representatives, Eric Massa, D-Corning, said that the Affordable Health Care for America Act gives too much to the insurance industry, doesn't do enough to control costs, and he can't support it.

  • Posted on Monday, November 9, 2009
    Dr. Carol A. Paris | Letter to the Editor | South Maryland Newspapers
    In the spirit of full disclosure, I support a single-payer national health program. That said, my comments are focused on HR 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act. I agree with Wendell Potter, the former head of public relations for CIGNA, that this legislation could more accurately be titled "The Private Health Insurance Profit Protection and Enhancement Act."

  • Posted on Monday, November 9, 2009
    By Donna Smith
    So, I wake this morning to see that Speaker Pelosi lied again about why she just could not allow a single-payer amendment to survive the legislative effort in the House on healthcare reform.

  • Posted on Friday, November 6, 2009
    By Rhonda Swan | Palm Beach Post
    Perhaps "death panels" weren't such a bad idea. For private health insurance companies. If ever there was a useless entity, it's a business that earns profits for doing nothing.

  • Posted on Friday, November 6, 2009
    By David M. Herszenhorn | New York Times | Prescriptions Blog
    Representative Anthony D. Weiner, Democrat of New York, a fierce champion in Congress of a single-payer health system that would be fully run by the government, said Friday that he had agreed not to insist on a vote on that issue, in an effort to help Democratic leaders pass their plan.

  • Posted on Friday, November 6, 2009
    By Dr. Michael T. Rey | Asheville (N.C.) Citizen-Times
    This country needs radical reform to fix a health care system that currently encourages poor-quality medical care and costs too much. A universal single-payer system would put the focus back on patient care, where it belongs, and reduce costs.

  • Posted on Friday, November 6, 2009
    Dr. Ellen Kaczmarek | Letter to the Editor | Asheville (N.C.) Citizen-Times
    A heartfelt public "thank you" to Dr. Michael Rey for his guest commentary, "ER doctor analyzes health reform debate," (AC-T, Oct. 23). He echoed my sentiments exactly, and as a practicing primary care physician, I strongly second his desire for a universal single-payer health care system.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 5, 2009
    By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF | Op-Ed Columnist | New York Times


  • Posted on Wednesday, November 4, 2009
    By Samuel Metz | The Oregonian
    Our health insurance industry succeeds as well in this century as the tobacco industry did in the last. Witness the congressional "reforms" -- all variants on a theme: Make every citizen buy our insurance. And if our price is too high, make our government buy it for them. All hail this great victory for free enterprise. But what about our health?

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 4, 2009
    By Shari Roan | Los Angeles Times Blog
    An analysis of 23 million hospital records from 37 states shows that a lack of health insurance likely played a role in the deaths of nearly 17,000 U.S. children over a 17-year period.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2009
    Medical News Today
    The American Medical Student Association (AMSA) urges Speaker Nancy Pelosi to keep her promise and allow a vote on a single payer substitution amendment to the House health care reform bill, to be introduced by Representative Anthony Weiner [D-NY].

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2009
    Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report
    Coverage numbers regarding the Democrats' legislative push "for a government insurance plan to compete with private carriers are finally in: Two percent. That's the estimated share of Americans younger than 65 who'd sign up for the public option plan.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2009
    By Kay Tillow | The Hill
    We are in danger of losing the opportunity to bring Improved Medicare for All, a single payer plan, before the Congress. Last July Congressman Anthony Weiner and six of his colleagues on the Energy and Commerce Committee attempted to substitute the real public option--HR 676, a single payer plan--for the healthcare reform in the House. Speaker Nancy Pelosi assured them that if they withdrew the amendment in committee they would have an opportunity to bring it to the House floor for a debate and vote. Now Pelosi is threatening to keep the Weiner Single Payer Amendment from seeing the light of day.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2009
    By Catherine Nessa | American College of Physicians Medical Student Newsletter
    On any given weekend during the fall of 2004, Andy Coates was never where you might expect--he wasn’t at home with his children or outside working in the yard. He wasn’t at a restaurant having dinner with his wife or at the ballgame with his buddies. He wasn’t at a party thrown by neighbors or friends, or even on a beach chair on vacation. Instead, Andy Coates spent his weekends at Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson, NY, with the barest of accommodations: meals were brought in by cooler, his bed was a cot in a room in a recently-closed nursing home across the street from the hospital, and for entertainment, he had his work. For many physicians such an arrangement might be unappealing, but it was perfect for Dr. Coates, who has found satisfaction and fulfillment in unexpected places by taking roads less traveled.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2009
    By Anne Underwood | New York Times | Prescriptions blog
    William Hsiao is a professor of economics at the Harvard School of Public Health and co-author of the 2004 book “Getting Health Reform Right.” He served as a health care adviser to the Taiwan government in the 1990s, when officials decided to reform that country’s health care system and to introduce universal coverage. He spoke with Anne Underwood, a freelance writer.

  • Posted on Thursday, October 29, 2009
    By SHARMINA MANANDHAR | Southern Maryland Online
    Four protesters, including two doctors, were arrested at a "single-payer health care plan" sit-in at the CareFirst insurance company office in Baltimore Thursday.

  • Posted on Thursday, October 29, 2009
    By Henry S. Kahn, MD
    No knock. Needed
    Perhaps a chance to talk
    With the doctor
    Would be nice.

  • Posted on Thursday, October 29, 2009
    From Mobilization for Health Care for All
    The Mobilization for Health Care for All continues to see a growing number of doctors participating in these actions. Yesterday Dr. Margaret Flowers, a pediatrician who has testified before Congress on the need for meaningful health care reform, was arrested in Baltimore and joined by Dr. Eric Naumberg, also a physician.