Vermont to get Single Payer Health?


Governor Peter Shumlin has submitted legislation that would create a state wide single payer healthcare system. That is to say, the government foots the bill for all healthcare administered to Vermont Residents. A number of doctors have already stated they would move to Vermont to take advantage of this, spending more time taking care of patients, and less fighting their insurance companies.

Via Kaiser Health News;

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin, who was elected last November after promising to reform health care in the state, unveiled a bill Tuesday that would abolish most forms of private health insurance and move state residents into a publicly funded insurance pool.

“Health care costs are climbing at a rate of more than 12 times the growth of the Vermont economy, and we’re not getting the best value for our money,” Shumlin said in a prepared statement. “The time for change has come.”

Some Democrats advocated for a national single-payer plan when Congress was debating the federal health overhaul that passed in March, but that plan was never considered politically viable because of widespread opposition and concerns about cost. Even efforts to offer a public option insurance plan that would compete against private insurers for consumers’ business failed after conservative Democratic senators refused to support it. Instead, the health law opted for tighter regulation of existing private plans, with a mandate that almost every American purchase health insurance.

Shumlin, a Democrat, has garnered some support for a health overhaul in the legislature, where Democrats overwhelmingly control both houses. The legislature had already commissioned Harvard economist William Hsiao, who helped design Taiwan’s single-payer system, along with MIT economist Jonathan Gruber and Vermont policy consultant Steve Kappel to provide recommendations on how to reform Vermont’s health care system. Shumlin’s plan takes many of those recommendations into account.

Read more; Vermont Gov. Proposes Single-Payer Health Plan

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