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The "New York Health" single payer bill

PNHP's Elizabeth Rosenthal:

While adding 900,000 formerly uninsured New Yorkers to the insurance rolls is no small success, healthcare remains too expensive for the average family.

The costs of deductibles, copays and out-of-network charges remain major obstacles, and these bloated, unnecessary charges we pay to profit-driven health insurance corporations have not been brought under control by the Affordable Care Act.

They effectively leave millions of our fellow New Yorkers uninsured or underinsured — one job loss or illness away from bankruptcy — and unable to truly access critical care.

This broken system also severely limits our access to certain doctors and medicine, as insurance companies decide which doctors and medications deserve to be covered within their networks.

Billions of dollars continue to be wasted by for-profit insurance companies under this defective model. We can do better!

These billions of squandered dollars could all be going toward providing health care if we eliminated this unnecessary middleman and its inflated costs.

Implementing the New York Health Bill could accomplish this — not only making care affordable to New York families but also by saving New Yorkers $20 billion a year, plus helping us cut our property taxes by eliminating local government's costs of paying for Medicaid and their employees' health care.

All New York residents would be covered, there would be no premiums, deductibles copays or out-of-network charges, and we would have our free choice of doctors, hospitals and health care providers.

As a physician, I have seen up close how my patients are suffering: unable to pay for their medications, tests and doctor visits. Because of this, many delay treatment until their health is in serious jeopardy. They are forced to choose between buying food and buying pills. They avoid costly tests and doctor visits, so that a curable cancer becomes deadly due to lack of timely treatment.

Every day, five New Yorkers die due to a lack of health care. That's about 2,000 lives per year in our state.

Singing to the choir here, but good to see Rosenthal in there punching.

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