Thursday, September 06, 2007

August 27 Meeting: Renee Ing and Jim Brewer--Single-Payer Healthcare vs. Business as Usual

Click here to listen.

In spite of the plans proposed by the Democratic Presidential candidates, Renee Ing and Jim Brewer, who have been advocating for Single Payer Health Care for at least ten years and have been attending meetings on the Legislative Taskforce on Health, are convinced that the Single Payer system is the best for this country and state. They pointed out that the Single Payer system would be the cheapest, simplest and offer the most coverage than the combination plans discussed by the candidates.

Across America, our broken health care system is squeezing families. In 2005, 47 million U.S. residents had no health insurance, and the numbers keep growing. Of the 47 million Americans without health insurance, nearly one-quarter—more than 8 million—are children. In Hawaii 108,000 people are uninsured.

Health care costs are rising at more than twice the rate of inflation. Health care premiums have increased 81 percent since 2000 based on the Kaiser Family Foundation surveys and wages have increased 16.5 percent. As employers find it increasingly hard to pay their share, this trend may result in millions of workers losing their employer-based coverage. 18,000 people die due to no coverage. Even with health insurance coverage, many people have had to declare bankruptcy because of health costs.

In a comparison to the Canadian system, Canada costs $3,500 per year per person, the USA costs $7,000. 31% of our costs are for administration: advertising, overlapping coverage from multiple insurances covering health, profit, commissions for sales agents. Canada spends only 1.7% on administrative costs.

A Canadian research firm found no differences in waiting times for services between the USA and Canada. Emergencies are seen immediately.