Bernie Sanders has talked about introducing a single payer healthcare system for a while now, especially after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell failed to repeal Obamacare. Now, his bill is finally on the table. Sanders’ Medicare for All Act has already gotten sponsors from people like Sen. Warren, Sen. Harris, Sen. Booker, and many other top democrats. And while there is still a long way to go before this bill should be taken seriously, this is a major step forward towards a vastly different healthcare system in the United States.
So here’s what Sanders’ healthcare plan would mean:
Unlike what he preached during his Presidential run, there would be a 4 year transition period, and the integration process would begin with children and senior citizens. This allows for a gradual change, and gives the economy and American people time to adjust. The system itself would cover everything. No more deductibles or premiums; healthcare would become a consistent payment for all Americans.
What’s good about this is that it puts a stop to added expenses to healthcare, which is significant ever since Trump began to undermine Obamacare and raise deductibles. It also ensures that every American can NEVER be denied healthcare. Consistent rates also prevent people from going bankrupt when they face a medical emergency. This saves the government trillions of dollars overtime, as private insurance companies can no longer undermine people and use insurance as a for-profit business.
However, this bill is also very complex and it will be tough for Sanders and his supporters both in and out of congress to help push the bill forward. The rich will be heavily taxed; that is just a fact. And asking rich people to voluntarily lose money is not an easy task. Your health insurance payments would come directly from your paycheck rather than paying for private insurance on your own. This would dramatically change the economy forever.
But this bill is worth bringing to the table. If France, Canada, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, and many more countries have a single payer plan, why cant we? This is a political bill that fits the definition of socialism; there is no denying that. But as history shows us, free market capitalism can’t succeed if being poor means you cannot afford to live; Michael Moore’s Sicko proved that. There has to be some support system for lower and middle class Americans, and a single payer healthcare system is exactly that.
So even if you didn’t “Feel The Bern,” in 2016, the plan is worth paying attention to. This is a step towards a more equitable and fair capitalist society, and a step towards a more equal and unified America.
Photo by Matthew Staver, Bloomberg.