HEALTH AND SAFETY

» Drug, Devices, and Supplements

» Physician Accountability

» Consumer Product Safety

» Worker Safety

» Health Care Delivery

» Auto and Truck Safety

» Global Access to Medicines

» Infant Formula Marketing

 

More resources on health care politics and terminology

Statement: Public Pressure Helps End Silence on Single-Payer in Congress

June 11, 2009

James Floyd, M.D., Health Researcher, Health Research Group at Public Citizen

Today, Dr. Margaret Flowers of Physicians for a National Health Program will testify before the full U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions - the first time all year that a single-payer advocate has been invited to participate in a Senate hearing on health reform. Dr. Flowers’ participation today, and Wednesday’s hearing in the House dedicated to single-payer, are clearly the result of the groundswell of public support for single-payer. At town hall meetings and rallies throughout the country, Americans have demanded to know why Congress has failed to consider the most popular reform proposal, one supported by a majority of the public.

But inviting single-payer advocates to speak at hearings doesn’t go nearly far enough. We should also be included in the closed-door meetings that congressional leaders are holding with so-called “stakeholders” - the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbies - to shape health reform legislation. Also, the Congressional Budget Office should score single-payer along with any other reform proposals. Lastly, all major committees dealing with health reform legislation, including the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, should hold dedicated hearings on single-payer. There is a great deal of misinformation about single-payer that needs to be clarified, including the difference between a “public” option and single-payer.

By excluding single-payer from hearings throughout the year, Congress decided that protecting the profits of an industry that adds no value is more important than providing quality health care to all Americans. But the public has demanded an end to this obscene silence on single-payer.

Copyright © 2014 Public Citizen. Some rights reserved. Non-commercial use of text and images in which Public Citizen holds the copyright is permitted, with attribution, under the terms and conditions of a Creative Commons License. This Web site is shared by Public Citizen Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation. Learn More about the distinction between these two components of Public Citizen.


Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation

 

Together, two separate corporate entities called Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation, Inc., form Public Citizen. Both entities are part of the same overall organization, and this Web site refers to the two organizations collectively as Public Citizen.

Although the work of the two components overlaps, some activities are done by one component and not the other. The primary distinction is with respect to lobbying activity. Public Citizen, Inc., an IRS § 501(c)(4) entity, lobbies Congress to advance Public Citizen’s mission of protecting public health and safety, advancing government transparency, and urging corporate accountability. Public Citizen Foundation, however, is an IRS § 501(c)(3) organization. Accordingly, its ability to engage in lobbying is limited by federal law, but it may receive donations that are tax-deductible by the contributor. Public Citizen Inc. does most of the lobbying activity discussed on the Public Citizen Web site. Public Citizen Foundation performs most of the litigation and education activities discussed on the Web site.

You may make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., Public Citizen Foundation, or both. Contributions to both organizations are used to support our public interest work. However, each Public Citizen component will use only the funds contributed directly to it to carry out the activities it conducts as part of Public Citizen’s mission. Only gifts to the Foundation are tax-deductible. Individuals who want to join Public Citizen should make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., which will not be tax deductible.

 

To become a member of Public Citizen, click here.
To become a member and make an additional tax-deductible donation to Public Citizen Foundation, click here.