Tag single-payer

Young Turks: Single-Payer Health Care Advances in New York

Associated Press: NY Assembly OKs universal health care; bill halted in Senate

June 17

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The New York state Assembly has again endorsed a single-payer universal health care system.

The Democrat-led chamber passed the measure last week for the fourth year in a row.

Passage of the legislation is largely symbolic, however. The Republican-led Senate is not expected to take up the measure before lawmakers adjourn for the year next year.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie says Democrats in his chamber believe all Americans deserve a health care system that guarantees coverage for all.

The proposal would allow all New Yorkers to enroll for health coverage that comes with no network restrictions, deductibles or co-pays. The system would use state and local funds that now go to Medicaid and other health care programs.

New Rochelle Patch: NY Assembly Passes Single-Payer Healthcare

By Michael Woyton, June 16

Albany has taken the first step toward giving New Yorkers a single-payer healthcare system. On Thursday, the state Assembly passed bill A4738, The New York Health Act would establish a program that would create a system of access to health insurance for New York residents.

The bill, which was sponsored by Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, D-75th Assembly District, is now going to be considered by the Senate. The Senate version, sponsored by Sen. Gustavo Rivera, D-33rd Senate District, is currently being considered by the Senate Health Committee.

If it comes to the floor of the Senate, it’s a toss up whether it could pass because, even though the Democrats have a one-seat majority in the 63-seat body, one Democrat — Brooklyn Sen. Simcha Felder — caucuses with the Republicans.

Under the bill, according to a press release from Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Gottfried, every New York resident would be eligible to enroll, regardless of age, income, wealth or employment, in the healthcare plan.

Video – Spectrum News: Will single-payer healthcare ever come to New York?

June 14 – Video here.

SPECTRUM NEWS VIDEO: The state assembly has again passed the bill to create a single-payer health care system in New York. And again, the Senate has no plans to vote on it. But in the time since Assemblyman Dick Gottfried first began sponsoring the measure, both the health insurance system and national opinion have changed a lot. He discusses where the issue stands now.

Queens Chronicle: A look at the fight for single-payer in New York

By Ryan Brady, June 14

With the Trump administration having taken steps to weaken Obamacare, New York activists have stepped up demands for the state to have a single-payer healthcare system.

In three of the past four years, New York’s lower chamber has passed a bill introduced by Assemblyman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan) that would establish the system in the state. Twenty-seven of Albany’s 63 state senators — all of them Democrats — are also carrying the bill in their chamber.

The bill’s never been passed in the state Senate, which for all but a short time has been controlled by the GOP for decades. Its numbers are now split evenly between Republicans and Democrats, owing to one from the former camp going on naval duty.

Implementing Gottfried’s plan, the New York Health Act, would require waivers from the federal government.

Gov. Cuomo said last year that he would sign the bill if “it was not incongruous to what the federal government would do to us. I think it’s a very exciting possibility. But I think it’s going to be a federal play and we are, our funding system basically relies on Medicaid from the feds. And if they turn off that valve or slow that valve, there is no way we’re going to be able to make that up in this state no matter what.”

Chelsea Now – Do or Die: A Day in Albany Advocating for Statewide Healthcare

By Donathan Salkaln, June 13

UPDATE: On Thurs., June 14th, in Albany, NY, Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie announced the passage of a universal single-payer health plan that would provide comprehensive health coverage for all New Yorkers.

How bad has our health care system become? A 25-year-old man is sideswiped by a truck on a busy Downtown street. The ambulance brings him to an East Side emergency room. “Broken leg, shattered bone sticking out of skin,” recalled Dr. Danny Lugassy. “He’s pulling out IVs, and pushing away nurses. I ask him, ‘What are you doing?’ He begs me, ‘Please do the bare minimum possible. I just started a job, but my health care won’t start until next month!’ ”

On June 5, two buses loaded with advocates of single-payer healthcare, mostly from Chelsea, Hells Kitchen, and Greenwich Village, left W. 33rd St. near Penn Station and headed to the state capitol to rally and lobby with others for single-payer healthcare. The event was organized by the Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) in tandem with the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA), 1199 SEIU, and over 100 labor and community organizations in the Campaign for New York Health. The day included pre-arranged individual office meetings with state senators, to voice healthcare concerns.

“Nearly every day, patients tell me they can’t afford the care that I
want to give them,” said Dr. Danny Lugassy, board member, Physicians for a National Health Program — NY Metro Chapter. | Photo by Donathan Salkaln

Chronogram: Can New York Pull Off Single-Payer Healthcare?

By Wendy Kagan, June 1

About 10 years ago, when she was 44, Eve Madalengoitia had a hunch that something was wrong. She was experiencing concerning symptoms of the lady sort, and her doctor said it’s probably nothing, but let’s get you an MRI to be sure. At the time, she was working as a consultant from her home base in Poughkeepsie, writing grants and fundraising for nonprofits; her husband was a self-employed artist. They didn’t have health insurance. The expense of an MRI (ballpark $2,600) was so daunting that Madalengoitia convinced herself that her symptoms were nothing to worry about. She was young and healthy, wasn’t she?

A few months later she got insurance through a new job, so she went ahead and scheduled the exploratory test. Soon after, she received some news that no one expected. “I had aggressive, high-grade uterine cancer, which was not common in women my age,” she says. “I needed immediate surgery, chemo, and radiation.” Thankfully, her insurance paid for it, and now she is NED (no evidence of disease). But she is keenly aware of the what-ifs. “Without health insurance, I probably wouldn’t have gotten the test and the cancer would have spread,” Madalengoitia says. “I wouldn’t be here to tell my story.”

City and State: Health care officials offer diagnoses for New York’s funding challenges

City and State, 2/27

Thanks to a flu season that’s one of the worst in recent memory, it has been a tough winter to stay healthy. Influenza hospitalizations are up and thousands have died. The flu vaccine has proven to be less effective than in years past, and public health experts say the disease may have yet to reach its peak. The spread of the virus is likely to continue for weeks.

It has also been a tough winter for New York policymakers and government officials who rely on Washington for funding. While congressional Republicans failed to repeal the Affordable Care Act, they’ve taken incremental steps to undermine the law, such as eliminating the individual mandate. The federal government has also reduced funding for safety net hospitals and for the ACA’s Basic Health Program, both of which play a major role in New York. Some Republicans in Washington still hope to scale back Medicaid and Medicare as well.

So we checked in with a few of New York’s top health care officials to hear their diagnosis of the situation – and how to remedy it.

RICHARD GOTTFRIED

Chairman, Assembly Health Committee

C&S: What are your health legislative priorities this year?

Truthout: Single-Payer Health Care Takes Center Stage in Gubernatorial Races

By Michael Corcoran, March 29

Illinois state senator Daniel Biss recently ran for governor on a platform that included support for single-payer. Biss lost, however, in the primary last month against billionaire J.B. Pritzker, who outspent his opponents by tens of millions in a campaign costing a “jaw dropping $63 million,” according to The Hill.

For single-payer advocates, the electoral defeat was disappointing, despite a respectable second-place finish for Biss. The good news, however, as Michael Lighty, public policy director of the California Nurses Association told Truthout, is that “we are seeing [gubernatorial] candidates running for offices across the country running on single-payer, many of them are viable.”

Indeed, supporters of the policy are running in California, New York, Michigan, Massachusetts, Iowa, Ohio, Minnesota, Florida, Maryland, Vermont and Colorado. “This is unprecedented,” Lighty said of the development.

American Journal of Public Health: Single-Payer Plan for New York Could Lead the Country

By Richard N. Gottfried, March 7

After the Las Vegas mass shooting in October, a Nevada official set up a GoFundMe page to help pay the medical bills of survivors. GoFundMe has a medical fundraising category with disease-specific sample pages and staff assistance to “make sure you tell a compelling story.” This is unacceptable in the wealthiest country in history.

In one third of American families, someone goes without needed health care. Insurance companies take 15 to 20 cents of each premium dollar for administrative costs, marketing, and profit, as compared with only two to three cents in traditional Medicare. Physicians, hospitals, and other providers spend just under 25% of their revenue on administrative costs. Twenty-eight million Americans remain uninsured and another 30 million are underinsured, with high deductibles or out-of-pocket costs.

Rising premiums, deductibles, copays, and out-of-network charges—imposed without regard to ability to pay—contribute to economic inequality. Insurance companies tell us which health care providers and services they will cover. In the case of labor unions, health benefits are a crushing burden on collective bargaining, crowding out negotiations for wages and other benefits and causing strikes. Almost every problem we face in health care—as patients, providers, employers, and taxpayers—is made worse and more difficult to solve by our reliance on health insurance companies.