Economists Weigh In On True Cost Of ‘Medicare For All.’ Bottom Line: It Would Be Expensive.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a 2020 hopeful at the front of a crowded pack, is set to unveil an updated version of his "Medicare for All" legislation, a plan that has gained momentum with progressive Democrats. It's difficult to put an actual price tag on one of the largest proposed domestic policy changes in a generation, but economists try providing an estimate. In the end, patients would probably pay less, and the government would pay a whole lot more.
The New York Times:
Would ‘Medicare For All’ Save Billions Or Cost Billions?
How much would a “Medicare for all” plan, like the kind being introduced by Senator Bernie Sanders on Wednesday, change health spending in the United States? Some advocates have said costs would actually be lower because of gains in efficiency and scale, while critics have predicted huge increases. We asked a handful of economists and think tanks with a range of perspectives to estimate total American health care expenditures in 2019 under such a plan. (Katz, Quealy and Sanger-Katz, 4/10)
The New York Times:
No Longer An Outsider, Sanders Is Using The Senate As His Launching Pad
When Bernie Sanders steps to the lectern Wednesday to reintroduce his Medicare for All Act, he will do so as a senator, just as he did when he introduced a resolution to end American military involvement in the Yemen war or when he shepherded legislation to improve veterans’ health care. But behind it are the unmistakable politics of 2020 and his campaign for president, a campaign that never really ended with the election of Donald J. Trump. And Democratic efforts to pull Mr. Sanders into the fold with a newly minted leadership post have only bolstered his platform to seek the presidency. (Stolberg, 4/10)
The Associated Press:
Bernie Sanders Relaunches ‘Medicare For All’ Amid 2020 Glare
Four of Sanders’ fellow senators and rivals for the Democratic nomination are set to sign onto the updated single-payer health care proposal. The bill’s reintroduction promises to shine a bright light on Democratic presidential candidates’ disparate visions for the long-term future of American health care. Under fire from President Donald Trump and Republicans for the astronomical price tag of Medicare for All, some candidates who support the plan tout it as one of several ways to achieve more affordable coverage and lower the number of uninsured. And others who don’t back it are instead focusing on safeguarding popular provisions of the Affordable Care Act, such as the one that protects coverage of pre-existing conditions. (Schor and Alonso-Zaldivar, 4/10)
Meanwhile, Republicans go on attack against the plan —
McConnell Fiercely Attacks 'Medicare For All' In Visit To Hospital Group
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) launched a fierce attack on "Medicare for all" on Tuesday in a speech to the American Hospital Association conference, urging the hospital officials to go to Capitol Hill and oppose the idea. “This radical scheme would be serious bad news for America's hospital industry,” McConnell told the conference. “You should not be the guinea pigs in some far-left social experiment.” (Sullivan, 4/9)
In Boston Visits, Trump Health Officials Ridicule ‘Medicare For All’ Plans
Two top Trump administration officials visiting Massachusetts slammed the Affordable Care Act as a failure – even though the law has broad bipartisan support in this state and key measures suggest it is working smoothly here. US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex M. Azar II and the administrator of Medicare and Medicaid, Seema Verma, in separate appearances Monday, also ridiculed the “Medicare for All” plans that many Democrats are now promoting. (Dayal McCluskey, 4/9)