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Senate HELP Hearing Highlights How Greed Damages Health Care

Sens. Markey and Warren Call for Massive Reforms to Put Patient Health Before Shareholder Wealth

Boston – Today the Primary Health and Retirement Security Subcommittee of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions held a field hearing that explored how greed in health care, particularly the role of private equity, harms the entire health care system.

The hearing honed in on accusations of reckless actions of Steward Health in Massachusetts, in particular during the years it was owned by Cerberus Capital Management. Steward and Cerberus have been accused of putting corporate profit ahead of patients, providers, and communities, which has left the Steward system at risk of total collapse with no accountability for those who profited while dragging the system down.

Eagan Kemp, Health Care Policy advocate at Public Citizen, released the following statement.

“We know that greed kills in health care, and the machinations through which that occurs were on full display in today’s groundbreaking HELP Committee hearing. Private equity has been a scourge of our health care system in recent years and the dire implications are being borne out in Massachusetts and across the country. Senators Markey and Warren identified important steps that must be taken to shine sunlight on corporate abuses in health care and to hold companies accountable for their deplorable actions.

“The Steward debacle is a cautionary tale, and something we are seeing in far too many parts of our health care system.

“The hearing also highlighted the need to move toward a Medicare for All system, which would finally end the profit motive in health care in the United States. We need Medicare for All now more than ever to ensure that our health care system serves the needs of patients instead of the bottom line of greedy corporations and their unscrupulous executives.”