While some in the labor movement counsel that the fight to establish a single-payer expanded and improved Medicare for All system must wait until the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is fully implemented or until a Democratic majority is restored to the U.S. Congress, activists in New York continue to move the healthcare justice struggle forward.
They are mobilizing support for Assemblyman Gottfried’s “New York Health Bill (A.5389)” that would create a single-payer, universal healthcare system for all New Yorkers funded through equitable public financing and with no co-pays, no deductibles and no premiums.
“The ACA has made some important improvements in how we organize and pay for healthcare in this country,” said Gottfried, who chairs the Assembly Health Committee. “But it still leaves us and our healthcare and our wallets in the hands of private insurance companies… We can do better.” A just released study finds that, even if New York State embraces Medicaid expansion under the ACA, over 1.2 million New Yorkers will remain uninsured in 2016. Millions more will be afflicted with inferior insurance plans that would do little to protect them from bankruptcy if they experience a major medical catastrophe.