The Gold Standard: The Medicare For All Act Of 2019

Image (2) medicare-for-all-150x150.jpg for post 20634Got to thank Iowa Citizens for Community Involvement (ICCI) for this bit of good news I found in my inbox Wednesday evening:

ICCI logo

I’m excited to be in Washington D.C. today celebrating Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s announcement of The Medicare for All Act of 2019.
As a registered nurse from Adair County, I can tell you first hand that rural America is facing a health care emergency. And this Medicare for All Act is the answer.

I’m writing today because there are 107 co-sponsors of this bill. But none of Iowa’s legislators have signed on yet. Pressure from everyday people got us to this point. And we need it to continue so this bill can be signed into law.

Call your Representative NOW and ask them to co-sponsor Rep. Jayapal’s Medicare for All Act of 2019.

Of all the healthcare bills floating around Congress, Rep. Jayapal’s bill is the gold standard we need. Here’s why:

• This bill creates a single, mandatory risk pool. At the core of single-payer is the promise to cover all care, for everyone. This means everybody is included – and nobody can take their ball and go play somewhere else. This is what’s known as a “universal risk pool.”

• Comprehensive coverage. “Everybody in, nobody out” must also mean “everything is covered.” Medical, dental, mental, vision, reproductive, long-term, elder care, and home and community-based services are covered.

• Federal standards, payment, and oversight. The federal government must set minimum standards for care and guarantee price payment. When states can pick and choose what they offer, their smaller budgets give them a financial incentive to cut costs and save money, and people die.

• Local implementation and flexibility. Healthcare needs in Des Moines, Denison, Denver, and Detroit, are all different from each other. Keeping the delivery of single-payer funding as close to the ground as possible lets it be more responsive to both the needs of the people and democratic pressure.

It’s only been a day since this bill was introduced, but already the insurance and pharmaceutical corporations are scared. They’re pushing major newspapers to attack our movement. Their biggest weapon is their checkbook: they will try to twist the arms of our elected leaders. The only thing more powerful than industry lobbyists is a movement of millions, holding their leaders accountable to promises to put people over profits.

I’m here to tell you that your call DOES make a difference! Plugging up Congressional phone lines, stuffing email inboxes and mailboxes – these are the things that actually get through to our Representatives. There is no time to waste: call your Representative NOW and ask them to sign on as a co-sponsor of Rep. Jayapal’s Medicare for All Act of 2019.

Thanks for all you do,

Barb Kalbach

Nurse, 4th-generation family farmer, and proud CCI member

There was a little note at the end to check the Intercept to see what kind of special interests were behind this bill. As most of us do I see “special interests” and I think corporations and money. So glad to see how wrong I was:

“The key outside groups involved in the drafting included nurses, doctors, disability rights activists, and advocates for the elderly, as well as public interest organizations such as Public Citizen and the Center for Popular Democracy.

The result is legislation that, within one year of its passage, would provide improved Medicare coverage for everyone 19 and under, as well as everyone 55 and over. Within two years, it would cover everyone between the ages of 19 and 55, as well.

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The effort includes related legislation that would change the way long-term care is covered. Under the current system, Medicaid is the last resort, which effectively means that the sick and dying must impoverish themselves in order to qualify. The new bill would end that practice and allow people to die with dignity at home.

That measure was written with the help of disability rights activists, led by the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities. “She wrote it with our community holding the pen. Over months, disability rights activists went back and forth on the language. We are included. Not just as a sidebar or footnote,” said Ady Barkan, an activist dying of ALS, who collaborated with the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities and others on the bill.”

This is looking like what the American public has been hoping for for decades. 

Prepare yourselves for the usual avalanche of lies from the right about government run health care. While they are lying to you ask yourselves have you ever heard of someone on Medicare say they would love to go back to their old insurance program? I never have. Have you ever heard of any country that has some form of universal health care have a populist groundswell calling for a for profit insurance run health care system? I never had.

In fact, the only group of people in the whole WORLD that wants anything like our current for profit, insurance run health care system is the Republican Party in the US. That is it. And they will stop at nothing to keep things the way they are.

It is way past time for a change that will put people in charge of their own health care instead of a for profit, insurance company run system.

About Dave Bradley

retired in West Liberty
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