Bernie Sanders has long advocated a universal single-payer health care but that position has come under attack by Hillary Clinton, who lambasted plans for ‘Medicare for all’ during a rally at a Dallas community college.
“I was actually the only one on that debate stage on Saturday who will commit to raising your wages and not your taxes,” Clinton told students, referring to a declaration Sanders made in the presidential debate. “I can’t see how you can be serious about raising incomes if you also want to slap new taxes on them, no matter what the taxes would pay for.”
“In an attempt to divert the public’s gaze from Wall Street coziness, the Clinton campaign has launched a false attack on universal health care – something she has previously supported,” said a Sanders spokesperson. :The Clinton campaign received more contributions from the pharmaceutical industry than any other – Republican or Democrat – through the first six months of the campaign.”
The American Health Security Act of 2013, sponsored by Sanders, would provide every American with affordable and comprehensive health care services through the establishment of a national program that requires each participating state to set up and administer a state single payer health program.
The Sanders plan incorporates Medicare, Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and TRICARE (the Department of Defense health care program), but maintains separate medical services under the Veterans Affairs Administration.
Private health insurance sold by for-profit companies could only exist to provide supplemental coverage, if the Sanders plan became law.
The cornerstones of Sanders’ program would be fixed total budgets, public accountability, measures of quality based on outcomes data designed by providers and patients, a national data-collection system with uniform reporting by all providers, plus a progressive financing system.
Sanders would provide universal coverage, benefits emphasizing primary and preventive care, and free choice of providers.
The Sanders program would also relieve businesses from the heavy administrative burdens of providing health care coverage, put all employers on an even playing field, and increase the competitiveness of American companies in the global marketplace.
“Every other industrialized nation has been able to use the power of a public authority to provide universal health care,” said Sanders. “The American Health Security Act seeks to do just that for all Americans and their businesses.”
Clinton was in Dallas for a fundraiser hosted by Regina Montoya, senior vice president of a private, not-for-profit, pediatric hospital system whose top executives are paid up to two million dollar salaries.
The morning fundraiser asked people to contribute up to $2,700, according to an invitation to the event.
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