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, February 26, 2008
    By LAURA S. BOYLAN | Sacramento Bee
    The Bush administration is eating away at the heart of Medicare. The first assault was the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003. And the second assault is the budget that President Bush just submitted to Congress.

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 20, 2008
    John Steen | The New York Times | Letter to the Editor
    To be sustainable over the long term, a plan requires structural change in how health care is financed and delivered, and states simply don’t have the power to do this. Nothing less than a single-payer public system administered nationally will do so.

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 20, 2008
    By John P. Geyman | International Journal of Health Services
    Recent years have seen the rapid growth of private think tanks within the neoconservative movement that conduct “policy research” biased to their own agenda. This article provides an evidence-based rebuttal to a 2002 report by one such think tank, the Dallas-based National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA), which was intended to discredit 20 alleged myths about single-payer national health insurance as a policy option for the United States.

  • Posted on Friday, February 15, 2008
    IRA STAMM | Letters to the Editor | The Capital-Journal (Kansas)
    The plan is a single-payer plan and involves the state becoming the insurance company for all Kansans. It is a given that many Kansans, including myself, have reservations about turning something as important as health care over to the government. At the same time, government protects our citizens and fights our wars. It builds our highways and provides subsidies to farmers to ensure a steady supply of food. Why should health care be singled out as the one area where government shouldn't be a partner?

  • Posted on Friday, February 15, 2008
    By Dr. Susanne King | Berkshire Eagle
    I often talk with people about health care reform, advocating for single-payer health care as the only answer to problems that include 47 million uninsured people in the United States, and an even greater number of underinsured; the economic pressure on businesses; and the rising costs of health care for our country, states, towns and individuals. Here are the questions people most frequently ask.

  • Posted on Wednesday, February 13, 2008
    By Sara Robinson |
    2008 is shaping up to be the election year that we finally get to have the Great American Healthcare Debate again. Harry and Louise are back with a vengeance. Conservatives are rumbling around the talk show circuit bellowing about the socialist threat to the (literal) American body politic. And, as usual, Canada is once again getting dragged into the fracas, shoved around by both sides as either an exemplar or a warning -- and, along the way, getting coated with the obfuscating dust of so many willful misconceptions that the actual facts about How Canada Does It are completely lost in the melee.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2008
    Personal communication, Dr. Walter Tsou
    The bipartisan authors of the Healthy Americans Act, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Bob Bennett (R-UT) were in Philadelphia today for a two hour session to explain their bill. Their purpose was to build public support for their bill with the goal of having most of the disagreements worked out by the time a new president takes office in January 2009. The bill depends on the "mandate" model of private insurance. The potential problems with this approach have been extensively written about by PNHP.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2008
    By Lisa Girion | Los Angeles Times
    The state's largest for-profit health insurer is asking California physicians to look for conditions it can use to cancel their new patients' medical coverage. Blue Cross of California is sending physicians copies of health insurance applications filled out by new patients, along with a letter advising them that the company has a right to drop members who fail to disclose "material medical history," including "pre-existing pregnancies."

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    LEONARD RODBERG | Letters to the Editor | Boston Globe
    At least 18 studies conducted since 1991, including two that examined single-payer plans for Massachusetts in 1998, have found that a single-payer plan could provide comprehensive coverage for everyone while costing less than is now being spent. Savings in insurance overhead and hospital and physician office billing costs would more than offset the cost of providing access to care for those who now don't have it.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By Daniel Lee | The Indianapolis Star
    Dr. Rob Stone, an emergency room physician at Bloomington Hospital, has emerged as one of Indiana's most outspoken advocates for making insurance accessible to all. He is co-founder and director of Hoosiers for a Commonsense Health Plan, which contends that the current system is too profit-driven, too inefficient, and leaves too many people without affordable access to health care.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By Dr. Rob Stone | Bloomington Herald Times
    A newly published study from Harvard in the American Journal of Public Health (Himmelstein, Woolhandler, et al, December issue) adds a new sad story to the picture -- another bunch of losers -- American veterans. Almost 2 million of the uninsured are veterans, along with almost 4 million of their family members, so that one in every eight uninsured is a veteran or member of a veteran's household.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By Rose DeMoro | Guest Column | Waco Tribune
    With the presidential contest closing in on Texas, voters may well wonder how to distinguish among the various candidates on health care, which -- at least on the Democratic side -- has been one of the hottest issues of debate.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By Adam Doster | In These Times
    "At best … the AMA is advocating a completely unproven method of achieving their ends and ignoring things that we know will work," says Dr. Stephanie Woolhandler, co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By Elizabeth Kurczynski and Allen Chauvenet | West Virginia Gazette
    As physicians who treat children with blood diseases and cancer at Women and Children's Hospital, we frequently see families with either inadequate insurance coverage or no coverage at all. These are almost always working families with one or both parents who have a steady job. These families are part of the 47 million Americans and the 322,000 in West Virginia with no health insurance coverage. Even families with "good" coverage are paying more per year with much higher co-payments and deductibles, since the cost of health insurance for a family is now over $12,000 per year.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By CHRIS KELLY | The Evening Sun
    Imagine a world without worrying if a doctor could see you - or if you could pay the bill. A world where all Pennsylvanians can afford health care. That's the world discussed Wednesday night by Chuck Pennachio at Gettysburg Area Democracy for America's meeting.

  • Posted on Monday, February 11, 2008
    By Jason Roberson | The Dallas Morning News
    Mortgage lenders aren't the only ones showing more interest in your credit score these days -- the health industry is creating its own score to judge your ability to pay.

  • Posted on Friday, February 8, 2008
    By John Warner | Op-Ed | West Virginia Gazette
    I HAVE written very critically of the American Medical Association, nor am I finished with my criticism. But I will report to you that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Not all physicians are enamored with the senior medical association. Today there is a younger organization, the Physicians for a National Health Program, comprising 14,000 physicians who support a plan for universal health care in America. It's about time.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 7, 2008
    Howard A. Green, MD, FACP, FAAD, FACMS | Palm Beach County Medical Society
    Medicare, the government health insurance for the elderly uses only 1-2% of your dollar to achieve rates of morbidity (sickness) and mortality (death) among their patients which are identical to those of the private health insurance corporations. However, private insurance corporate bureaucracies inefficiently siphon $350 billion per year, or 20-25% of your hard earned dollars away from doctors, hospitals and patient care into the pockets of their executives, administrative employees, shareholders and politicians. The recent stock option fraud perpetrated by the CEO of United Health Care demonstrates the negligent disdain the private insurance corporations have for physicians, hospitals, health care workers and patients.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 7, 2008
    Posted by Marcella Bombardieri | Political Reporter | Boston
    In New Haven on Monday, a fourth-year Yale medical student named Liza Goldman approached us excitedly to report on a conversation she had with the New York Senator on the rope line. According to Goldman, she told Clinton, “I’m sure you know that single-payer would save billions of dollars and thousands of lives.” Clinton, Goldman says, responded in agreement but said, “It’s not politically feasible.” So Goldman offered her a hypothetical: “Would you sign it if it came across your desk?” “She said yes, and shook my hand,” Goldman said.

  • Posted on Thursday, February 7, 2008
    By Robert Kuttner | The New England Journal of Medicine
    Changing demographics and medical technology pose a cost challenge for every nation's system, but ours is the outlier. The extreme failure of the United States to contain medical costs results primarily from our unique, pervasive commercialization. The dominance of for-profit insurance and pharmaceutical companies, a new wave of investor-owned specialty hospitals, and profit-maximizing behavior even by nonprofit players raise costs and distort resource allocation.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 5, 2008
    By RICHARD PROPP | Albany Times Union
    When a health insurance company seeks for-profit status, it appears it has made a decision to fundamentally change how it operates to acquire a large infusion of cash. This fundamental change will logically result in a shift from a consumer-satisfaction priority to a shareholder-satisfaction focus.

  • Posted on Tuesday, February 5, 2008
    Leland Y. Yee | San Francisco Chronicle
    I joined California nurses, school employees, senior groups and a number of labor unions last week in opposing the governor's flawed health-care bill, Assembly Bill X1 1. While the bill was touted as a fix to our broken health-care system, after extensive study by the Senate Health Committee and the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office, it is now clear that this proposal was bad for consumers and unfairly favored insurance companies.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008
    by David Adler | The New Republic
    Conservative lawmakers and many business leaders are touting health savings accounts as the silver bullet to fix America's dysfunctional health care system. But, while widespread use of health savings accounts is untested here, there is a country with a decade's worth of experience with similar consumer-driven health plans: South Africa.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 29, 2008
    The California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee today offered praise to the Senate Health Committee for resisting enormous pressure to pass a badly flawed healthcare bill and pledged to work with legislators, community groups, and labor for genuine healthcare reform that avoids the serious shortcomings of AB x 1.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 29, 2008
    Rose Ann DeMoro | The Huffington Post
    Before the leading Democratic candidates come to California for the upcoming super Tuesday primary February 5 and spend a lot of time talking about their health plans, they might want to cast a look at the demise of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's much ballyhooed healthcare bill.

  • Posted on Monday, January 28, 2008
    New Hampshire Medical Society
    The survey found that 81% of responding physicians agree healthcare should be "available to all citizens as part of the social contract, a right similar to basic education, police and fire protection," with 94% of primary care physicians endorsing this view. Two thirds of New Hampshire physicians, including 81% of primary care clinicians, indicated they "would favor a simplified payor system in which public funds, collected through taxes, were used to pay directly for services to meet the basic healthcare needs of all citizens."

  • Posted on Monday, January 28, 2008
    By Robert Gumbiner | Press-Telegram
    There is a somewhat illogical argument being made against expanding Medicare to include all citizens and taxpayers in the U.S., which is that Social Security and Medicare are going to go broke. This argument makes no sense. For one thing, if this were true, how could the federal government keep borrowing from Social Security and Medicare? The fact is, Medicare has the money and the federal government doesn't.

  • Posted on Friday, January 25, 2008
    By KIP SULLlIVAN | Minneapolis StarTribune
    If you liked the school report cards required by President Bush's No Child Left Behind law, you're just going to love the doctor and hospital report cards that will almost certainly be recommended by the two state health care commissions -- the Health Care Access Commission and the grandly named Minnesota Health Care Transformation Task Force -- due to report in the next few weeks.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 24, 2008
    By Peter Freyne | 7 Days - Vermont's Independent Voice | Inside Track
    Surprise, surprise! Rep. Topper McFaun's health-care-reform bill -- the one the powers-that-be said was absolutely, positively not coming off the committee-room wall -- is going to get two days in the spotlight next week, after all! H.304, the Vermont Hospital Security Plan, would guarantee hospital coverage for all Vermonters while cutting $60 million in annual spending. Pretty radical stuff, eh?

  • Posted on Thursday, January 24, 2008
    Media Release | The University of British Columbia
    Ten years after BC PharmaCare implemented spending limits for equivalent prescription drugs -- a policy known as reference pricing -- investments in British Columbia medical research are as strong as ever and continue to increase, according to a UBC study.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 24, 2008
    By Alice Dembner | The Boston Globe
    Spending on the [Massachusetts'] landmark health insurance initiative would rise by more than $400 million next year, representing one of the largest increases in the $28.2 billion state budget the governor proposed yesterday.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 23, 2008
    Editorial | New York Times
    The nation’s failure to provide health insurance for all Americans seems to be harming even many of those who do have good health coverage. That is one very plausible interpretation of a disturbing increase in waiting times at emergency rooms that are often clogged with uninsured patients seeking routine charity care.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 23, 2008
    H. DAVID PRENSKY | Letter to the Editor | Palm Beach Post
    The U.S. National Health Insurance Act, if enacted, would eliminate the excessive drainage of money that has nothing to do with providing care. The huge sums now going to the sales forces, advertising budgets, lobbying campaigns, shareholder dividends, and huge executive salaries and bonuses would be saved. These expenditures are the root cause of the present attempt to reduce the fees Medicare pays doctors.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 22, 2008
    By Craig Axford | The Salt Lake Tribune
    America will never solve its health-care problem so long as we insist on arguing our crisis is inferior to the crisis everywhere else and therefore our system is superior to everyone else's. One is not being unpatriotic when pointing out other nations have managed to do some things better.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 15, 2008
    ABX1 1 contains an individual mandate with subsidies available to a very limited group of individuals. Employees who are offered health care, no matter how minimal or unaffordable, are denied all subsidies and access to the pool.

  • Posted on Monday, January 14, 2008
    Thomas Clairmont, M.D. & Pamela Clairmont, R.N. | Portsmouth Herald
    No one likes the current system with 47 million uninsured, an equal number under-insured, 50 percent of bankruptcies related to medical debt and heartbreaking story after story in the newspapers about local citizen's problems with the health care system. So how about evidence-based governance? All you have to do is look at the systems in Canada, Britain, France and other nations to see that it is possible to devise a health care program that covers everyone the same way, without any middlemen, and where there is never any worry about being able to afford a doctor's visit or an operation.

  • Posted on Monday, January 14, 2008
    JOEL A. HARRISON | San Diego Union-Tribune | Letters to the editor
    As the old saying goes, a lie told often enough becomes the truth. In this case, that it cost $1 billion to develop new drugs. Over the past 20 to 30 years, the pharmaceutical industry has averaged net profits three times that of other Fortune 500 companies. It spends more on marketing and lobbying than on research, often including marketing research in its calculations.

  • Posted on Monday, January 14, 2008
    by Claudia Chaufan |
    The "Health Care Security and Cost Reduction Act", also known as ABX1 1, and described by New York Times reporter Kevin Sack as a "bipartisan blueprint" conceived by Republican governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Democratic Assembly speaker Fabian Nunez to bring "near-universal coverage to the country's most populous state", will neither provide health care security nor reduce costs of medical care. This article explains why.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2008
    By Daniel Barlow | The Barre Montpelier Times Argus
    Doctors, nurses and other health professionals led a rally of more than 150 people at the Statehouse on Wednesday in support of a once under-the-radar bill that would create a "single-payer" system for covering hospital care in Vermont.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2008
    By Tom Linnell, EdD | The Coloradoan
    I am starting to see why all of us - liberals, conservatives and independents - might really like single-payer health insurance.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2008
    Jessica S. Banthin, Ph.D., Peter Cunningham, Ph.D., Didem M. Bernard, Ph.D. | Health Affairs
    Rising health care costs, combined with slowed economic growth, have created greater financial burdens for U.S. families in recent years--and raised the likelihood that they will face problems paying bills, accumulate medical debt, and even forgo needed medical care.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2008
    Joanne Laucius | CanWest News Service | Ottawa Citizen
    Canada's health care system offers "excellent value for the money" says a British researcher who has studied preventable deaths in 19 industrialized nations.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2008
    Rose Ann DeMoro | The Huffington Post
    As the scorecard in Iowa is tallied, add insurance companies to the loser camp along with the disgraceful, rhetorical sham that forcing individuals to buy insurance is universal healthcare.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2008
    Ellen Nolte, Ph.D., and C. Martin McKee, M.D., D.Sc. | Health Affairs
    In a Commonwealth Fund-supported study comparing preventable deaths in 19 industrialized countries, researchers found that the United States placed last. While the other nations improved dramatically between the two study periods--1997–98 and 2002–03--the U.S. improved only slightly on the measure.

  • Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2008
    By Nicholas Timmins | Financial Times
    More US patients die from diseases that could be treated by timely intervention than in any other leading industrialised country, a study by top health academics showed yesterday.

  • Posted on Monday, January 7, 2008
    By DANIEL BARLOW | Vermont Press Bureau
    While legislative leaders talk about a slow expansion of Catamount Health and Gov. James Douglas eyes reforms to stem jumps in insurance premiums, a wide-reaching proposal for the health care crisis is gaining steam among advocates.

  • Posted on Monday, January 7, 2008
    John P. Geyman, MD | Tikkun
    As we face the 2008 presidential campaigns, the stakes have never been higher for health care reform. Health care is pricing itself beyond the reach of lower-income and middle-class Americans with no cost containment yet on the horizon. Seniors with Medicare are paying much more out-of-pocket for their medical care now than when Medicare was enacted in 1965.

  • Posted on Monday, January 7, 2008
    J. Wesley Boyd | New York Times | LETTERS
    Why can't the leading Democratic candidates muster the courage to propose real health reform that will save lives, time and money -- and in addition that would be the most equitable of all options -- instead of rehashing proposals that have never resulted in universal coverage and haven't done anything to rein in the costs of health care? We have single-payer armed services, fire prevention and road maintenance. Aren't we long overdue for single-payer universal health care?

  • Posted on Thursday, January 3, 2008
    By Bangor Daily News Staff
    Polls show that health care is a major issue -- rivaled only by the Iraq war -- in the current presidential campaign. Complaints about the present system include the mounting cost, the many left out, poor service and too much paperwork. Yet all the major candidates of both parties advocate only makeshift modifications of a system widely viewed as broken.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 3, 2008
    Associated Press | The Boston Globe
    Uninsured cancer patients are nearly twice as likely to die within five years as those with private coverage, according to the first national study of its kind and one that sheds light on troubling healthcare obstacles.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 3, 2008
    Stephen Crockett
    It is obvious that none of the major Presidential candidates of either the Democratic or Republican Parties are supporting the right approach to providing universal healthcare. Frankly, all the Republican candidates are going to be major obstacles to achieving this national goal. While the top Democratic candidates (Clinton, Edwards and Obama) do support the concept, they are all offering Band-Aid approaches for a life-threatening economic and health crisis in America.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 3, 2008
    In a stunning turn around, insurance giant CIGNA has capitulated to community demands, and protests that the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee helped to generate, and agreed to a critically needed liver transplant for Nataline Sarkisyan, a 17-year-old girl in the intensive care unit at UCLA Medical Center.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 3, 2008
    by Michele Swenson | Board Member, Health Care for All Colorado
    Five proposals were selected to be evaluated by the Lewin Group, including an additional proposal written by a subcommittee of the Commission. The Colorado Health Services Single Payer Proposal is the only reform proposal that demonstrated any savings for the state -- $1.4 billion -- and also the only one capable of providing comprehensive health care for all. The Colorado Commission chose to base most of its recommendations on its own (5th) Proposal.

  • Posted on Thursday, January 3, 2008
    By Kim Dixon | Reuters
    Insured and wealthy Americans were more likely than the poor to get billions of dollars in free drug samples distributed by pharmaceutical companies to win patient and doctor loyalty, a study released on Wednesday showed.

  • Posted on Wednesday, January 2, 2008
    The NH Medical Society announces, along with other NH civic organizations, a televised Forum on the timely topic of where the Presidential Candidates stand on changing US health care, on Thursday, January 3, 2008 at the MCAM Studio from 3:30-5:30 PM at 540 N. Commercial Street, Manchester New Hampshire.

  • Posted on Monday, December 24, 2007
    By Bob Williams | The Record Searchlight
    For too many Americans, loss of a job means loss of health care coverage. This has come home today among laid-off workers in the building trades as housing construction tanks. Too many Americans have no health care coverage even though they have a job. Other Americans, with health coverage, find themselves directed to emergency room care when their attack of chest pain occurs on the weekend.

  • Posted on Friday, December 21, 2007
    By JIM McMEANS | Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Op-Ed
    More than any other factor, private health insurance coverage is the reason why the United States has a dysfunctional health care system in which over 45 million Americans lack coverage and approximately another 40 million have unreliable coverage. Americans who have unreliable coverage are sometimes called the underinsured. A better description is Americans who have private health insurance.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2007
    By Rose Ann DeMoro | The Huffington Post
    In a present gift wrapped by the California Assembly with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger playing Santa, Assembly members passed a bill mislabeled as healthcare reform that will guarantee not health care but millions of new customers for the insurance industry, with California taxpayers paying the bill.

  • Posted on Monday, December 17, 2007
    By Nelson Bradshaw | Catskill Mountain Foundation
    The Oneonta Free Clinic will make a valiant effort meet the medical needs of these people. But small, private clinics are not the real answer to the nation's mounting health care crisis, according to Doctor Friedell. "A free clinic is just a band-aid," says the physician. "It's a way of getting care to people in a hurry. My personal belief is that we need a single-payer health insurance system in this country. A simple name for the program might be Medicare for Everybody.

  • Posted on Monday, December 17, 2007
    By Susan F. Wood | The Boston Globe
    To ensure the health of our families we need strong, consistent leaders who value the integrity of science, make decisions on the best available information, and support prevention. Without that leadership, we will not succeed in promoting the health of all Americans. We shouldn't have to wait for a change in presidential leadership.

  • Posted on Monday, December 17, 2007
    By Doug Trapp | American Medical News
    The American College of Physicians has endorsed the concept of a single-payer health care system for the first time.

  • Posted on Saturday, December 15, 2007
    IN 1971, President Nixon sought to forestall single-payer national health insurance by proposing an alternative. He wanted to combine a mandate, which would require that employers cover their workers, with a Medicaid-like program for poor families, which all Americans would be able to join by paying sliding-scale premiums based on their income. Nixon's plan, though never passed, refuses to stay dead. Now Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and Barack Obama all propose Nixon-like reforms. Their plans resemble measures that were passed and then failed in several states over the past two decades.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 13, 2007
    Richard Iammarino, M.D. | The Charleston Gazette
    In medical care, most charges are not related to cost. This is an important point. There have been many attempts to tie charges to cost. As health-care bills go up, it is clear that these are not working. It is in this area that a single-payer plan makes sense and will save money. A single-payer plan is the most effective way to help charges relate rationally to cost. The reason is the ability to be effective in negotiations.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 13, 2007
    ROBERT P. STEVENS | Palm Beach Post | Letters
    A single-payer system would provide the opportunity of a "medical home" (Health Affairs/Commonwealth Fund 2007) for everyone, thus reducing non-emergency traffic in ERs. It also would, and equally important, pay every doctor promptly for services rendered. These two solutions, and many others, have persuaded the American College of Physicians (124,000 physicians) to endorse single-payer along with 86 members of Congress (HR 676).

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007
    (excerpted from USA Today, Dec. 11, 2007)
    (In 1996) Obama said he would support a single-payer health plan for Illinois "in principal" [sic], "although such a program will probably have to be instituted at a federal level; the long-term objective would be a universal care system that does not differentiate between the unemployed, the disabled, and so on." The campaign says Obama has consistently supported single payer health care in principle.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007
    Jeremiah Schuur | The New York Times | Letter
    Mr. Krugman has devoted many columns to extolling the benefits of a single-payer system, so I am not sure why he is repeating politicians’ talking points about minor differences rather than asking why the three leading Democrats aren’t supporting the best reform policy.

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2007
    Jennifer Jacobs | Des Moines Register Staff Writer
    Himmelstein, reached by phone Monday at Harvard, said the study is accurate. The Northwestern academics misrepresented and manipulated the data, he said. “President Clinton is correct,” Himmelstein said. “But he’s wrong in saying his wife’s plan would do something about it.”

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2007
    Angus Reid Global Monitor | Polls & Research
    42 per cent of respondents would prefer a plan that replaces the current health care system with a "single-payer" program where all health care costs are paid by the government, while 41 per cent would choose a plan that maintains the current system where most health care costs are paid by individuals or employers.

  • Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007
    By Russ Britt | MarketWatch
    While health-care reform may play second fiddle to the war in Iraq among voters this election season, it appears that the domestic issue is taking on new life thanks to medical-industry professionals.

  • Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007
    By Daniel Gallington | The Washington Times
    So far, almost all the Republicans have been able to say is that the Democrats propose faceless socialized medicine, a la Canada, the Britain and Europe -- and that it's way too expensive and will require massive tax increases. However, the Democrats aren't proposing that -- they are proposing almost everyone be required to buy private health insurance (Hillary Clinton) and/or that people who can't afford it, especially children, would get private health insurance free or at low cost (Barack Obama).

  • Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007
    By BRAD WARTHEN | Editorial Page Editor | The State
    Last week, I got a press release from a labor union that complained "that no Republican candidate has a plan to ensure all Americans have access to health care." That's true. But the union, which represents blue- and pink-collar workers in health care, was missing the fact that the leading Democrats are little better.

  • Posted on Monday, December 10, 2007
    Posted by Marisa Treviño
    As the presidential debate deepens, or gets more desperate, it won't be surprising to hear more and more candidates who are scared of the immigration issue spouting off just plain WRONG information.

  • Posted on Friday, December 7, 2007
    Niko Karvounis | Health Beat Blog
    On Monday the CDC released a landmark, and in many ways devastating, report on health care in the U.S. The report contains a wealth of data that, while not surprising to some, should help silence the dwindling few who insist that America's health care system is doing just fine. As a public service, I thought it'd be helpful to list some of the myths that the report demolishes (with some help from other sources as needed).

  • Posted on Thursday, December 6, 2007
    KAY TILLOW | Louisville Courier-Journal | Readers' forum
    We cannot solve the nursing "shortage" in Louisville without solving the conditions that force good nurses from the bedside and from their chosen profession. Many can't sleep after their 12-hour shifts for thinking about what almost happened and what could happen. The lack of organized nurse power to change these conditions and win truly professional standards of care and benefits has stifled health care progress in Louisville.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 6, 2007
    By Mary Ann Garnar | OP-ED | Special to The Courier-Journal
    A realistic and honest assessment of the proposals leads to the inevitable conclusion that the best solution for the greatest number is what is called universal, single-payer health insurance. That is, health insurance for all residents of the United States, largely funded with a tax based on income, and benefits paid out by the federal government. (A bill now in Congress, HR 676, the United States National Health Insurance Act, if passed, would establish just such a plan.)

  • Posted on Thursday, December 6, 2007
    by Julie Rovner | NPR Morning Edition
    "The term socialized medicine, technically, to most health policy analysts, actually doesn't mean anything at all," says Jonathan Oberlander, a professor of health policy at the University of North Carolina. Oberlander says the phrase actually dates back to the American Medical Association's fights against national health insurance in the early decades of the 1900s.

  • Posted on Thursday, December 6, 2007
    Center on Budget and Public Policies
    The government pays Medicare Advantage plans roughly $1,000 more per beneficiary per year than it would cost to cover the same person through traditional Medicare. Even though private plans were brought into Medicare to lower costs, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission and the Congressional Budget Office have found that they are paid 12 percent more, on average, than it would cost traditional Medicare to cover the same beneficiaries.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 5, 2007
    Farhana Hossain | The New York Times
    The leading Democrats are competing among themselves over who has the better plan to control costs and approach universal coverage. The Republicans, for the most part, are promising to expand coverage without increasing the role of the federal government, and reduce cost through tax incentives. Most of the candidates have not presented a detailed outline of their health care plans, but here is what they have said so far.

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 5, 2007
    By JASON ROBERSON | The Dallas Morning News
    Sheila Krumholz, executive director for the Center for Responsive Politics, says the Democratic surge shouldn't come as a surprise -- a similar donation migration (in reverse) was seen in many industries from 1994 through 1996, when the Republicans took control of Congress. "When power changes hands in Congress, the money follows the power."

  • Posted on Wednesday, December 5, 2007
    RICHARD M. BERLIN, M.D. | Berkshire Eagle | Letters
    As long as we have a system that includes insurance companies, money will continued to be channeled into executive salaries and other administrative expenses that do nothing to improve anyone's health.

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 4, 2007
    By Stacey Burling | Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Writer
    The Philadelphia-based American College of Physicians - the nation's second-largest physician group - endorsed a single-payer health-care system yesterday.

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 4, 2007
    By Michael Kaplan | Boston Globe
    Piece-meal reform such as the new law will not work. Both employers and the public support the concept of single-payer healthcare. Big business is starting to realize that a single payer system will be the only affordable way to cover everyone. When will our politicians understand that their political futures will depend on supporting this kind of comprehensive reform?

  • Posted on Tuesday, December 4, 2007
    The Des Moines Register's Editorial
    Having taxpayers help pay your health-insurance bills is a great deal if you can get it. Those vying to lead the country have gotten it. But some of them don't think all Americans should have it. Republicans in particular denounce "government-run" health care while offering ideas of questionable value, such as medical-malpractice reform. A 2004 report by the Congressional Budget Office found that malpractice costs account for less than 2 percent of health-care spending.

  • Posted on Monday, December 3, 2007
    By Donna Smith | American SiCKO and HealthCare-Now Road Show team
    It hasn't been an easy year. But as 2007 draws to a close, I can count among my political allies and new friends some of folks I would never have guessed would have given me the time of day outside of an exam or procedure room. We truly are blessed in this nation to have thousands of doctors who care enough about the practice of medicine and the delivery of health care to support real reform and to do so publicly.

  • Posted on Friday, November 30, 2007
    By BETH FOUHY | Associated Press
    Health policy experts generally agree that the only way to achieve truly universal coverage is to enact a "single payer" health care system that is run by the government.

  • Posted on Friday, November 30, 2007
    By Bonnie Washuk | Lewiston Sun Journal
    With insurance companies, hospitals, doctors and drug makers focused on profits instead of patients, health care has become unaffordable, not just to those without insurance but to those with it, said people who crowded into a labor union hall Tuesday night.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007
    By Susanne L. King | Berkshire Eagle
    For all you boomers who are looking retirement in the eye, cast your gaze on a recent Boston Globe article entitled "Blue Cross gave chairman $16.4 million in retirement pay." William C. Van Faasen, 58, collected those benefits in 2006, even though he didn't leave the company. He merely stepped down as chief executive of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts, but retained his position as chairman, receiving nearly $3 million in salary and bonuses the same year he collected retirement benefits. This astonishing gift went to the chairman of a non-profit organization that does not pay income taxes to a state that is trying to provide universal health insurance to its citizens.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007
    Dr. McFarlin is Director of Internal Medicine at Broadlawns Medical Center, Polk County’s safety net hospital, a member of Physicians for a National Health Program, and an advocate for universal healthcare reform.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007
    By Donna Smith | Progressive Democrats of America, Colorado member
    The road show has the mission of bringing the message of HR676, single-payer universal health care (The National Health Insurance Act), to the people of the area, and the issues of homelessness and lack of public facilities serving the poor and uninsured often go hand-in-hand with a lack of access to health care and other issues surrounding poverty.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007
    By Mary Engel | Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
    Illegal immigrants from Mexico and other Latin American countries are 50% less likely than U.S.-born Latinos to use hospital emergency rooms in California, according to a study published Monday in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2007
    By ROBERT PEAR | The New York Times
    When senators debate health care, they usually speak in abstract terms about soaring health costs and the plight of the uninsured. But just 20 feet from the Senate chamber is a young man who knows those problems all too well from personal experience. The man, Sergio A. Olaya, runs the Capitol elevators on which the senators ride. Whenever the Senate is in session, he is on duty. Mr. Olaya, 21, is struggling with $255,000 of medical bills incurred by his mother before she died in April from an aggressive form of brain cancer.

  • Posted on Monday, November 26, 2007
    By Peter Freyne | Seven Days: Vermont's Independent Voice
    Richter doesn't mince words. And she's part of a growing body of medical doctors across the country who also want America to join the rest of the civilized world with regard to health care. They have an increasingly active national organization called Physicians for a National Health Program ( These docs share the "radical" notion with docs in France, Britain, Spain and Canada that "health care is a human right."

  • Posted on Monday, November 26, 2007
    Mark Gruenberg, Editor | Press Associates
    As the debate over the future of national health care heats up--at least among the Democratic presidential hopefuls--an advocacy group for single-payer government-run health care has published a leading medical scholar's point-by-point criticism of the health care plans offered by the top three Democrats.

  • Posted on Monday, November 26, 2007
    by Tom Walsh | The Ellsworth American
    Now living near Digby, Paul and Gretchen Volenik are enjoying all that rural Nova Scotia has to offer, including tax-funded medical care.

  • Posted on Monday, November 26, 2007
    Uwe E. Reinhardt | The New York Times | Letter to the Editor
    If Mr. Giuliani despises socialized medicine, as he now contends, perhaps he would abolish the V.A. health system if he were elected president. American veterans should challenge him to come clean on the issue.

  • Posted on Monday, November 26, 2007
    The California Democratic Party | Resolution Number ANA07.15
    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the CDP strongly supports the drafting and passage of legislation that creates and enacts a single-payer health care program which provides comprehensive, secure, high quality, efficient and sustainable access to health care for all Californians.

  • Posted on Monday, November 26, 2007
    by Andrew D. Coates | Monthly Review
    Thus, this SCHIP expansion, even if enacted, would still fall short of meeting all the unmet needs as private health insurance fails ever more children than before. So one step forward, one step back.

  • Posted on Tuesday, November 20, 2007
    By Marshall Helmberger and Tom Klein
    The merits of the Canadian style of health care have been the subject of intense debate in the U.S. for months, sparked in part by Michael Moore’s recent documentary film, “Sicko”, which highlighted Canada’s system among others. Free market advocates have shot back, pointing to studies that show growing dissatisfaction among Canadians over long wait times for some types of medical care.

  • Posted on Thursday, November 15, 2007
    BY ERIC COOK | Kalamazoo Gazette
    Dr. James C. Mitchiner said single-payer health insurance can greatly reduce health care costs by removing the profits and broadening the risk pool. Mitchiner is an emergency-room physician at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor and president-elect of the Washtenaw County Medical Society.

  • Posted on Wednesday, November 14, 2007
    Indira Dammu | Indiana Daily Student
    Contrary to Republican claims, however, no Democratic presidential candidate has advocated a "free" universal health care system. Sen. John Edward’s health care plan, the most promising within the field, calls for a small tax increase and repeal of Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy. Sixty percent of Americans support such a tax increase if it means universal access to health care.