Through The Eyes Of Women: The 'What' and 'Why' of California's Universal Healthcare Proposal
Health care in America is in deep crisis. One in five working class Americans with health insurance report problems paying medical bills. We have the most expensive healthcare system in the world, almost $10,000 per person. Yet we’re number 28 in life expectancy.
Our taxes already fund 2/3 of USA health spending by paying for Medicare, Medicaid, VA, Public Health, government workers benefits and tax subsidies. The same goes for California. We don’t have enough physicians but we have plenty of administrators. Billing and insurance related administrative costs are 18% of our total expenses. That’s money that isn’t going to direct health care services.
But something very exciting is happening in California. State Senate Bill 562-The Healthy California Act (Lara and Atkins) will create a state-based universal health care system and provide comprehensive health care coverage for every Californian. Sponsored by the California Nurses Association working with hundreds of other labor, business, professional and lay organizations SB 562 will pool health care funds into one publicly run health care insurance plan that covers everyone who lives in the state. That’s why it’s called Single Payer. Key provisions of this Act include: Every California resident will have one plan and the ability to choose their provider. SB 562 will allow patients, not insurers to pick their doctor, hospital, and clinic. No more surprise out of network bills because there’ll be no insurance networks. No insurance claims denials based on corporate profit goals. By pooling health care funds in a publicly-run fund, we get the bargaining power of the seventh largest economy in the world (that’s California) so we can clamp down on out of control prescription drug costs. There’ll be transparency and accountability by having public oversight on costs and care and not decisions made in secret by private for-profit insurance companies. Finally no more co-pays or deductibles.
How can we afford this dream? Check out this link.
We’ve never come closer to achieving a goal of providing universal health care with Single Payer. Rumors are circulating that private for-profit health insurance companies plan to pour 50-100 million dollars into California to frighten us about the specter of government interference and convince us that setting up a Single Payer system is an impossibility. Pat Snyder, a retired nurse with a PhD in nursing has been working on reforming California’s health care system for 14 years. At age 80, she proves that with education, commitment and passion, we can build a movement that will create one of the best health care systems in the world that truly delivers high quality health care equally to all.