“After COVID-19, there is simply no excuse for the U.S. not to adopt Medicare for All and join all other rich countries by treating health care as a right.
“The overwhelming case for Medicare for All has long been clear. Medicare for All will end the cruel and needless rationing of health care that defines the current system. Rationing that keeps tens of millions of uninsured and underinsured people from seeking care. Rationing imposed by health insurers who deny care as a core part of their business model. Rationing that too often makes medicines available based on ability to pay, rather than need, leading 29% of Americans to report they do not fill prescriptions or take them as prescribed due to cost concerns.
“Medicare for All will put an end to all of this. It will establish, simply, that health care is a right and that all Americans have access to care. Regardless of ability to pay. Regardless of race or ethnicity. Regardless of whether they live in a city or rural area. Regardless of employment status.
“It’s not just about access. Medicare for All will improve health care quality. Every American would have better insurance – with broader coverage, including for long-term care – with an improved and expanded Medicare than they do now. Doctors and nurses would be freed to provide care rather than spend their time on billing. Medical equipment and facility investments would be based on need rather than corporate gamesmanship.
“Medicare for All will also be vastly more efficient than the current corporate-run system. It will save hundreds of billions annually by eliminating waste, marketing, bureaucracy, excessive executive compensation and profiteering.
“All of this has long been clear. What is different now is the coronavirus pandemic. The pandemic has underscored the cruelty and irrationality of our current health care system – and the urgency of replacing it with Medicare for All.
“Amid the worst acute public health crisis in generations, the current insurance system failed massively. Millions lost their health insurance and health insurer profits soared. Hospitals and providers, operating with just-in-time systems and investments oriented to expensive treatments rather than public health, were less well equipped to absorb the pandemic demands than they should have been.
Healthcare for All Los Angeles (HCA-LA) is helping to lead the fight to win healthcare for everyone in CA. They are advocating for an expansion of multilingual and multicultural healthcare services by working to win passage of AB1400, a legislative reform act that would put an end to the corporate domination of healthcare services. Maureen Cruise sites her own experiences as a Registered Nurse witnessing how private entities such as Pacifica Companies puts the welfare of corporate profits ahead of patient care.
What does poverty look like in the United States?
Life inside an ‘American-made’ tragedy
Henry Broeska 4 days ago·9 min read
Aidan on a school night, accessing free Wi-Fi in the restaurant parking lot where he works and doing online homework by LED light.
Accelerated by the pandemic, there are uniquely underlying reasons for the growing population of ‘working homeless’ in the United States that starts with inadequate health care. Somehow we have normalized a type of poverty that doesn’t exist in most other countries, including Canada.
January 10, 2021
By: Henry Broeska
Aidan Rosenkoetter seems to have it all. On the outside he’s the handsome all-American boy, the kind mothers dream their daughters will bring home to dinner. He’s now a senior at prestigious Ladue Horton Watkins High School in St. Louis, recently named the top ‘non-selective’ high school in Missouri. He’s been a driven self-starter his whole life and has become an ‘A’ student — even through online pandemic school. A former state football champion, he’s been called a ‘natural leader’ by his coach. It would seem that Aidan’s future couldn’t look much brighter as he reaches college age.
Yes, Aidan is everything a 17-year-old All-American student should be — with one exception. He’s poverty-stricken. Instead of applying to college and looking over scholarship offers with his parents, Aidan’s life has become a monotonous blur of drudgery and suffering, both physical and mental. Here in the heartland of the wealthiest country in the world, what we find unfolding instead is the ‘all-American tragedy.’ And it’s a tale that’s becoming all too common.
Aidan works an average of fifty hours a week at a McDonald’s restaurant. He pulls mostly overnight shifts before logging onto his classes — until he has to go to work again in an unchanging cycle of tedium. There’s no time to do the fun things that kids his age are supposed to do. He grabs minutes of sleep where he can, sometimes propped up in a chair. On payday he hands half of his paycheck over to his mom to help pay the family bills.
MEDICAL APARTHIED“SAY HERE NAME” Written by Akili and Dr. Emilee Bargoma
The recent and sad death of Dr. Susan Moore is another example of anti-Blackness and medical apartheid. In the words of Dr. Susan Moore: “You have to show proof that you have something wrong with you, in order for you to get the medicine. I put forward, and I maintain: If I was white, I wouldn’t have to go through that. Dr. Bannec made me feel like I was a drug addict, and he knew I was a physician.” This is how Black people get killed, their complaints of pain and discomfort are often either challenged, or go unaddressed. Black people often are treated using protocols and equipment that have been optimized and calibrated to serve White patients.
Black patients are also often sent home without proper information or instruction on how to care for themselves. For those (like Dr. Moore) who are aware of these treatment dichotomies and demand that they be given proper care, they are met with passive aggressive responses. In Dr. Moore’s case, her doctor (Bannec) not only downplayed her pain, but placed the onus on her to prove she was in pain. Within a few days Dr. Moore was dead from COVID-19 related complications. And even in death, those who denied her adequate medical care insist that they were bullied by her. Simply because she demanded that they treat her accordingly.
This is clear evidence of State sanctioned violence. Just as we witnessed George Floyd being refused his humanity by Derek Chauvin, we also witnessed Dr. Moore’s last days as she was denied her humanity by the doctors and medical staff who had sworn a pledge to Do No Harm.
This is not new, it has been an experience Black people have suffered since our enslavement. The current pandemic of COVID-19 has disproportionately ravaged Black communities across the country. Black people are nearly five times more likely to be hospitalized, and three times more likely to die, from the coronavirus.
It is incumbent upon us to attack the State sanctioned medical apartheid, that exists in this country, in the same manner in which apartheid in South Africa was attacked. Firstly, we must be prepared to loudly disrupt the system, and demand open acknowledgement of the stark duality that exists in this country’s medical care system. Secondly, the teaching practices of the medical profession must undergo radical change. We must demand that Black patients are afforded the same treatment as their White counterparts. Finally, we must demand Black voices be at the center of every aspect of health care, starting with a call for the single payer systems of Medicare For All.
Because all Black Lives Matter, it is our duty to fight to end these medical apartheid practices so Black Lives can be saved. Unfortunately, the deliberate neglect of Black Americans by a racist system, has claimed the life of Dr. Susan Moore. She has been made an honor ancestor, another name we will call upon to ground us in the Black Liberation Struggle.
MEDICINE AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
Health Inc. September 15th 2020, 5:00AM
Taylor Glascock for KHN
Coronado may outlive the hospital that saved him. Founded 168 years ago as the city’s first hospital, Mercy survived the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 but is succumbing to modern economics, which have underfinanced hospitals serving the poor. In July, the 412-bed hospital informed state regulators that it planned to shutter all inpatient services as soon as February.
“If something else happens, who is to say if the responders can get my husband to the nearest hospital?” says Coronado’s wife, Sallie.
While rural hospitals have been closing at a quickening pace over the past two decades, a number of inner-city hospitals now face a similar fate. And experts fear that the economic damage inflicted by the COVID-19 pandemic on safety net hospitals and the ailing finances of the cities and states that subsidize them are helping push some urban hospitals over the edge.
By the nature of their mission, safety net hospitals everywhere struggle because they treat a large share of patients who are uninsured — and can’t pay bills — or have their care paid by Medicaid, which doesn’t cover costs. But metropolitan hospitals confront additional threats beyond what rural hospitals do. State-of-the-art hospitals in affluent city neighborhoods are luring more of the safety net hospitals’ best-insured patients.
These combined financial pressures have been exacerbated by the pandemic at a time when these hospitals’ role has become more important: Their core patients — the poor and people of color — have been disproportionately stricken by COVID-19 in metropolitan regions like Chicago.
“We’ve had three hospital closures in the last year or so, all of them Black neighborhoods,” says Dr. David Ansell, senior vice president for community health equity at Rush University Medical Center, a teaching hospital on Chicago’s West Side. He says the decision to close Mercy “is really criminal in my mind, because people will die as a result.”
Floyds testimony at one of the Assembly comittee Health care hearings in Sacremento. Floyd is the vice Chair of ILWU – So California Council, member of Labor United For Universal Health Care and a crane operator at the Long Beach port. He speaks about the need for Single-Payer Healthcare
WHY SB562 WAS NOT ENACTED
How Anthony Rendon Sabotaged SB562 Single Payer Healthcare for California and the effects it had on the public.
BUILDING THE MOVEMENT FOR HEALTHCARE JUSTICE
VIDEO BY CLIFFORD TASNER
Health Care for All – California (HCA) is dedicated to achieving a universal health care system through single-payer public financing. Our goal is that all California residents will have comprehensive, high quality health care.