News Headlines Article

Growing Support for a National Health Program and Health Care as a Human Right
The Huffington Post

We can thank Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign for putting single-payer national health insurance (NHI) on the front burner of today’s national political discussion. This is long overdue and especially timely as the two parties debate alternatives for future U. S. health care. It appears that political feasibility for NHI may finally be approaching a time of acceptance, if our democracy can prevail over oligarchy and plutocracy.

The 20,000 physician-strong Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) has released today a Physicians’ Proposal for Single-Payer Health Care Reform, updated from its 2003 proposal (1), with an accompanying editorial. (2) It describes how traditional Medicare can be expanded to cover our entire population for necessary health care, provide comprehensive benefits to all Americans, give us free choice of physician and hospital, reduce waste and bureaucracy, and save money at the same time. This proposal by a non-partisan, not-for-profit national organization has been endorsed by more than 2,200 physician colleagues in all specialties. (3) More recently, it has been endorsed by an additional 560 physicians and medical students. (4) In its 2004 report, the Institute of Medicine (now the National Academy of Medicine) called for universal health care by 2010, listing single-payer NHI as one of the alternatives; none of the other alternatives could ever be expected to achieve universal coverage, as they remain part of the problem. (5)