Overview of Single-Payer Healthcare in the States, Thanks to Kathlyn Stone

Kathlyn Stone has done what I should have done and collected my recent postings on state level single-payer healthcare on her blog.

imageThe question isn’t if a state will enact true health care reform before Congress, but which state and when.

Forget Congressional action on meaningful health care reform. It’s clear that whatever national health care legislation is passed, its main intent will be the preservation of a for-profit system.

Actual delivery of health care to all Americans who need it remains a lesser priority than keeping the system profitable. The federal plan will protect the insurance CEOs’ eight- and nine-figure salaries and the system of monthly premiums, which with promised rate hikes, will soon equal or exceed our monthly housing payments. Individuals will continue to fund the insurance industry’s marketing and bureaucracy through taxes and premiums. As an added bonus for the industry, citizens could be fined if they refuse to purchase its insurance.

The real reform action is taking place in the states.

David Sawnson (“Daybreak,” 2009, After Downing Street) is keeping a running tab on state health reform efforts. His analysis includes talking with the lead sponsors of state legislation, many of whom believe theirs will become a model for the nation. Below are excerpts.

Single-payer healthcare coming to Minnesota and Maryland

California keeps passing bills for state single-payer healthcare, but Ahhhnold won’t sign em, and Jerry Brown who wants to be governor doesn’t seem to want it badly enough to make a commitment on healthcare. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania is encouraged that their current governor has said he probably will sign a single-payer healthcare bill, and the legislature just might pass one. But Minnesota has an angle neither of these other states can claim: a serious candidate for governor who is the state’s leading advocate for single-payer. More


Pennsylvania likely to get healthcare before rest of U.S.

I’ve been writing about various states just beginning campaigns for single-payer healthcare. Pennsylvania is on the cusp of completing one.

They claim to have the best legislation, which will provide everyone with healthcare, pay for it, and in fact save people and businesses money, as well as getting around the federal restrictions Congressman Dennis Kucinich has attempted unsuccessfully thus far to waive for states. In Pennsylvania they have Democratic and Republican cosponsors. Imagine that in Washington, D.C.! And they have a governor ready to sign the bill into law. More 

Colorado could see single-payer healthcare

Now, let me tell you about Colorado. Mark Mehringer is a candidate for the Colorado State House from District 7 (Denver). His website at  has an issues page and a video on the home page that both put a Medicare-for-All healthcare solution at the top of his agenda. More 

Single-payer healthcare coming to Missouri

Byron DeLear, whom I have known and learned from for years, said on Monday: "If elected, I will sponsor the ‘Melanie-Care for All Act’, providing a simple plan to get all of our Missourian families the coverage, protection and care we deserve." DeLear, is a state rep. candidate in the 79th District of Missouri.  (See http://www.ByronDeLear.org ) 

DeLear is proposing to accomplish something, however, that neither Obama nor Reid will even entertain any discussion of: taking the profit-motive out of healthcare coverage.  "If Melanie had access to affordable healthcare," DeLear says, "her untimely death might have been prevented. Seeing a doctor was simply too expensive, just as it is for tens of thousands of Missourians, whose fear of skyrocketing healthcare costs are justified. Health insurance premiums in Missouri have risen 82.5% in the last decade, consequently, the vast majority of all personal bankruptcies are due to medical costs, for both the insured and uninsured alike. This creates a specter of fear for families all across our state. Melanie’s death is one of thousands of needless lives lost due to our current broken and inhumane healthcare insurance system." More

Candidate for North Carolina House commits to introducing state single-payer healthcare

Now North Carolina house candidate Marcus Brandon has pledged to introduce a bill to create single-payer healthcare in that state. Brandon, whom I know and like and who worked for Congressman Dennis Kucinich’s 2008 presidential campaign, is a candidate in North Carolina House District 60. That’s near Greensboro, where I can just picture Marcus sitting at a lunch counter and refusing to be provoked. More 

Pennsylvania Democrats unanimously endorse single payer Senate bill 400 and House bill 1660

Lancaster – The Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee today unanimously endorsed a resolution calling for passage of single payer healthcare, Senate Bill 400 and House Bill 1660, also known as the "Family and Business Healthcare Security Act."

Given the healthcare reform deadlock in Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania’s nation-leading status in the battle for state-based “Medicare for All,” is all the more significant.

“Not only does Pennsylvania now have the Democratic Party on board with the Single Payer healthcare for all,” said Healthcare for All PA executive director Chuck Pennacchio, “we also have the promised signature of our governor and the active support of Republican and Democratic leaders in both the State Senate and State House.” More

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