Universal health care

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The U. S. health system spends a higher portion of its gross domestic product than any other country but ranks 37 out of 191 countries according to its performance, according to the World Health Organization's World Health Report 2000.

"The United States spends more than twice as much on health care as the average of other developed nations, all of which boast universal coverage. Yet over 39 million Americans have no health insurance whatsoever, and most others are underinsured, in the sense that they lack adequate coverage for all contingencies (e.g., long-term care and prescription drug costs). However, other systems that are completely or partially based on social risk-pooling principles are under threat from neoliberal policies worldwide[1].

Why is the U. S. so different? The short answer is that the U.S. is alone in treating health care as a commodity distributed according to the ability to pay, rather than as a social service to be distributed according to medical need."

The leading advocate for a single-payer national health insurance system in the US has been Physicians for a National Health Program whose website has a basic primer on it.

American Health Security Act of 2009

A bill introduced in the US Senate by Senator Bernie Sanders that would create a single payer health care system, essentially the Senate counterpart to H.R 676.

United States National Health Care Act: H.R.676

2009 Bill Information

H.R.676 is legislation introduced that if enacted, "establishes the United States National Health Care (USNHC) Program to provide all individuals residing in the United States and U.S. territories with free health care that includes all medically necessary care, such as primary care and prevention, prescription drugs, emergency care, long-term care, mental health services, dental services, and vision care." [2]

2006 Bill Information

Healthcare-NOW! endorses the United States National Health Care Act, H.R.676, an "Expanded & Improved Medicare For All Bill", that was introduced February 2, 2005, in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressman John Conyers, Jr., co-sponsored by Dennis Kucinich, Jim McDermott, and Donna Christensen. [3] On April 4, 2005, the bill was referred to the House Subcommittee on Health. [4] See the full list of co-sponsors as of July 2006 here.

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