A potential democratic presidential candidate in the 2020 run Senator Kamala Harris has supported the Sanders bill Medicare for All. While Democrats are introducing radical proposals for improving healthcare and reducing the rising drug prices, the healthcare industry especially those in the health insurance sector have signaled strong disapproval.
The healthcare bill Medicare for All wants to eliminate all private insurance providers to create a single-payer system. The bill if passed will cost billions of dollars in revenue for private insurance companies as well as raise federal government’s healthcare bill. Hospitals, doctors, drug companies and insurers have united in order to fight the federal takeover of health insurance. One particular industry group called Partnership for America’s Health Care Future (PAHCF) has kick started a digital ad campaign arguing that a Medicare for All will cause massive disruptions like lower quality care, reduced choices and higher taxes. It has also planned a six figure spending to bash ‘Medicare for All’ which is a major contentious issue for 2020 presidential elections.
The bill has many notable co-sponsors which include possible Democratic nominees for 2020 such as Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand and the legislation’s leader Bernie Sanders. Although the bill is named as Medicare its scope goes well beyond current framework in place which covers only people with disabilities and adults 65 years and older. It proposes to pay for mental health care, eye care, prescription drugs and emergency surgery without a copay. As soon as the bill gets passed children would also be enrolled in the government’s plan and gradual enrollment of the rest in next four years. The plan would effectively cover half the population of United States. The 177 million Americans currently covered by private insurance will be moved to the governments Medicare.
PAHCF Group’s executive director Lauren Crawford Shaver said that whether it be Single-payer, public option or Medicare for All, the one size fits all healthcare policy will mean loss of choice to Americans in coverage, treatments and doctors. The bill which would effectively do away with insurance companies would lower overall healthcare spending by $2 trillion. However Americans are divided about the issue as a recent survey conducted by Kaiser Family Foundation revealed. The survey found that 56% of respondents favored the Medicare bill, however 37% of them responded negatively stating that the bill would eliminate private insurance options.