Shorter Waits and Higher Efficiency: The Truth About Medicare-for-All

Feb. 4, 2019

Shorter Waits and Higher Efficiency: The Truth About Medicare-for-All

Worker Transition, Lower Costs and Increased Efficiency Are Central to a Single-Payer System

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Contrary to the image painted by critics, a single-payer, Medicare-for-All health care system would greatly increase access to care without adding to the deficit, according to an analysis by Public Citizen.

The analysis takes a comprehensive look at the research available on Medicare-for-All and lays out the facts, including that such a policy would cut administrative waste, reduce profiteering off of health care and encourage economic growth.

The analysis comes as U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) prepares to introduce Medicare-for-All legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives this month. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has announced support for hearings on the legislation, which would be the first time a single-payer health care system will be taken seriously by House leadership.

Medicare-for-All opponents, including Big Pharma and health insurance companies, already have tried to squash any talk of such reform, which would threaten their profit margins.

“The growing movement for Medicare-for-All requires everyone in Congress to take a fresh look at single-payer health care with open eyes, instead of dismissing it based on false claims from those who profit from our fragmented health care status quo,” said Eagan Kemp, a health care policy associate at Public Citizen.

The report addresses common Medicare-for-All questions by highlighting key facts, including:
• The system would save money by reducing administrative costs by $500 billion per year and allowing the government to negotiate for more affordable medicines;
• Such a system would be paid for using a progressive funding mechanism so that higher-income earners would pay a greater percentage of their income than moderate- or low-income earners;
• Medicare-for-All would cost patients less than employer-sponsored insurance and improve access to community-based services, including home health care;
• A just transition to Medicare-for-All would ensure that former private insurance workers receive the training and support necessary to pursue new careers;
• Medicare-for-All would improve financial stability for rural hospitals and doctors; and
• Under Medicare-for-All, there would not be increased wait times, in part because improved financial incentives for providers would mean better prioritization of care, leading to improved access and a reduction of unnecessary costs.

“For people who care about evidence – not ideology – the facts are clear: Medicare-for-All is the most efficient and most just approach to provide health care for everyone in America,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen.

Read the full report (PDF).

Close

RSVP to Public Citizen's Gala

The event will feature a keynote address from U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and remarks from Desmond Meade — who led the campaign that restored voting rights to 1.4 million Floridians.

RSVP HERE