New York! Save your Wallet from the Healthcare Mob!

Holly Lynch New Yorker Logo
Holly Lynch New Yorker Logo
Holly Lynch New Yorker

New York! Save your Wallet from the Healthcare Mob!

Holly Lynch: Citizen Advocate
October 11, 2018

As I was rushed to NYU Medical Center on May 13th 2014, the worst news was not that I had an incurable grapefruit-sized cancer in my head, but that Oxford had canceled my insurance. That happened again in 2016. And with that, I was labeled not only “high-risk” but a “pre-existing condition” twice-over.  I had to laugh, twice. 

Here’s the problem: Being human is a pre-existing condition. We will ALL get sick, many of us, VERY sick. And who banks on that? Health insurers. Much like the mob, their monthly “protection” is limited and expensive and doubles-down the sicker we get, (read: the more we need it, the less we have it). We pay the premiums, but in our darkest hour, are punished for terminal illness. Insurers are truly sick.

Conservatives refer to Medicare and Medicaid as “entitlements”, as if healthcare were a charitable gift. But Congress declared healthcare a right in 1986 when it passed the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA), an unfunded mandate signed by Reagan ensuring EVERYONE, regardless of income, status or citizenship, received care at federally funded hospitals (nearly all of them). See? We already pay the bill. So why not pay a smarter, more fiscally sound bill that actually covers our pre-existing human condition, and that of our aging loved-ones? 

In fact, single-payer is the most fiscally conservative healthcare plan. We already pay more than any other country, and experts warn it could become a 5th of our economy. So trust me, we pay for universal healthcare; we just don’t get it.

So, when Bernie championed “Medicare For All” and skeptics yelled: Too expensive! Fiscally irresponsible! Hospitals and business will suffer! Care will decline! I was intrigued.


The New York Health Act, a single-payer plan to be introduced in the next State legislative session, promises even more comprehensive coverage than Medicare for all New Yorkers by including mental and long-term care. Most importantly, it takes insurers out of the transaction – a profound savings for individuals, business and the state. A recent study by the Rand Corporation declared it would provide universal coverage, billions in net healthcare savings and around 200,000 new jobs.

"The RAND study makes it clear that the New York Health Act is not only feasible, but the most fiscally responsible option for our State,” said State Senator Gustavo Rivera, Ranking Member of the State Senate Health Committee and bill co-sponsor.
 
"This is an important validation of the New York Health Act by one of the most prestigious analytical firms in the country," said Assemblyman and Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried, another legislative sponsor. "RAND shows we can make sure every New Yorker gets the care they need…save billions every year by cutting administrative costs, insurance company profit, and outrageous drug prices; and pay for it all more fairly.”

So, what should YOU do? Tell your state representatives you want healthcare for all New Yorkers! Get the facts at the Campaign for New York Health https://www.nyhcampaign.org.

Holly Lynch New Yorker
20181016