Wednesday, May 21, 2014

qotd: Sen. Bernie Sanders - Panel Discussion on Single Payer Health Care

May 21, 2014

Senator Bernie Sanders

Single Payer: Where do we go from here?

A Panel Discussion

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt)
Robert Weissman, President, Public Citizen
Gerald Friedman, Professor, Economics, University of Massachusetts at
Dr. Margaret Flowers,
Dr. Andrew Coates, President, Physicians for a National Health Program
Michael Lighty, Director of Public Policy, National Nurses United

Dr. Andrew Coates: In a modern democracy, it seems to me that it's a
responsibility of the government to guarantee all necessary care to
everyone in the democracy, and also to protect the privacy of the
decision making between the patient and his or her caregiver. And if you
think about that a little bit further, what would it mean if we had
national health insurance? What would it mean if we had access to all
necessary care? - we didn't have to worry when our mother needed to
make a transition to a nursing home.; we didn't have to worry when our
child got leukemia; we didn't have to worry… like all of my patients -
every patient I have in the hospital is worried about the money problems
that are going to follow their illness. And it is an absolute national
disgrace - Yes, we can indict that, but let's think about that the other
way. What kind of freedom would we have if we could travel anywhere we
wanted and know that there would be an adequate health care
infrastructure? - if the Adirondacks - with an underserved population in
my own state - has hospitals with the support staff they needed? This
would be liberating. And it would change the political culture of our
nation to the idea that we can do this together. We all deserve basic
human dignity, and we should all be free - and I think that health care
is such a modern necessity that that can take our democracy to that place.

Video (drag time marker to 25 minutes for start of forum):


Comment by Don McCanne

This video should be shared with others to assist in disseminating the
message of the moral imperative of single payer.

So where do we go from here? The simple answer is forward. We need to
continue with education, coalition and grassroots efforts so that the
nation will understand that we, as a democracy, can bring health care to
everyone while eliminating the pecuniary punishment inflicted on those
unfortunate enough to have health care needs.

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