September 23, 2019 | Updates

WHAT THEY ARE SAYING: Americans Urge Elected Officials To Build On What Is Working, Reject One-Size-Fits-All Health Care

WASHINGTON – As evidence continues to mount that a new government-controlled health insurance system – known as the public option – is not in fact a “moderate” alternative to Medicare for all, voices throughout the nation are encouraging elected officials to oppose a one-size-fits-all system that will force Americans to pay more to wait longer for worse care.

Frank Antenori, Veteran & Former State Senator, Arizona:

… The idea put forth by many presidential candidates and other national figures that our country would be better off under a government-run health care system is misguided at best and outright dangerous at worst. 
… A recent study found that a public option proposal, which is essentially just a road to Medicare for All, would put roughly 55% of America’s rural hospitals “at grave risk,” including many here in Arizona. Threatening access to our nation’s rural hospitals would put many veterans at risk … As access declines, costs and wait times will rise – and these are already major hurdles veterans face when trying to get care they need. 
… Moreover, veterans could end up paying even more under the tax hikes that would be required to finance such a massive government program that some predict would cost more than $30 trillion over the first decade alone … Forcing more veterans closer to the brink of economic ruin through higher taxes or increases in their private premiums would only serve to make this problem significantly worse.
… As the presidential election season continues to heat up, candidates and lawmakers alike should remain focused on strengthening health care in America, not undermining it by scrapping a system that has taken years to build in favor of one that will deliver lower-quality care, reduced access, and longer wait times – all at higher cost.  Our veterans deserve better than that. 

Bob Stein, Legislative Committee Chair, Minnesota Association Of Health Underwriters & Marie Bell, Former President, Minnesota Association Of Health Underwriters, Minnesota:

… [P]rograms such as Medicare pay doctors, hospitals and clinics a very low reimbursement rate, and many times this rate doesn’t even cover the provider’s cost to deliver the care.  This “loss” is then shifted onto the rest of the insured market, meaning that citizens of the USA with private, employer-paid, or individual insurance pay higher rates to make up for what the government programs don’t pay.  If more people get/buy-in to Medicare because it appears to be less expensive, the government will be paying doctors, hospitals and clinics an increased amount of the lower reimbursement rates.
This will, very likely, lead to severe cuts to local doctors, hospitals and clinics.  Cutbacks in service and quality will certainly follow, particularly in lower-population areas where important health resources are already scarcely critical.  If, as expected, more patients shift to the cut-rate government plan, smaller clinics and hospitals will not be able to withstand the low reimbursements, and many will have to close … The true impact of Medicare For All and similar proposals will be fewer options for individuals, not more.
… It is critical that Minnesotans and all Americans become informed on the true impacts of expanding government health care plans before they find themselves facing fewer choices in hospitals, clinics, and doctors.  Without informed and engaged health-care consumers, we risk our policymakers making a significant mistake.

Joan Liska, Connecticut:

… Medicare For All does not equate with ready access to first-class medical care and medicine.  When you take a finite number of hospital beds, nurses, doctors, medical technicians and medical technology, there are going to be rationing of access to all of these medical providers. 
When you then say to these hospitals, doctors, nurses, medical technicians and inventors of new medicines and technology that these medical providers will only get reimbursed at a rate controlled by the government, these same medical professionals will either go out of business, as their expenses are too great for Medicare reimbursement rates to make them whole or the available pool of medical professionals will shrink rapidly as smart professionals will quit the profession to seek other avenues to make more money.
…  [W]hen you take 150 million working class people off their employer-provided health insurance (you know, the employer who pays for the largest percentage of the premiums for the insurance coverage), those people will have to significantly adjust their household budget to pay for this new Medicare For All concept.

Louie Guffanti, California:

While I support health care for all, I’m opposed to Medicare For All, if that includes the end of private insurance.
Consider a worker under a negotiated pay package that includes medical coverage rather than higher pay.  I think that includes … many union members and more.  This may comprise tens of millions of voters.  The problem is how to treat workers who put in years of work to obtain health care rather than pay and would be forced into Medicare … Will they be reimbursed for the years of lost income when the long-term medical they have paid for is lost?  Or are they just forgotten?
Democratic candidates must not make tens of millions of workers go to the polls in 2020 with the pivotal question in their minds being Trump and my medical plan v. Democrat and unproven government healthcare.

Buddy Musarra, Pennsylvania:

… A majority of people polled would not want “Medicare for All” if it meant giving up their private insurance, yet the leading 2020 candidates are pushing it … How do they plan on winning elections if they are not listening to the people?



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