By the editors
Minnesota Physician, September 2012
The Supreme Court’s ruling on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) on June 28 will have major repercussions for patients and providers. Minnesota Physician asked representatives from Minnesota health care organizations to respond to this question:
“How will the Supreme Court’s ruling on the ACA affect your organization and its patients/constituents?”
Response by Physicians for a National Health Program:
ACA will not fix the health care crisis
The work of the Minnesota chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) will continue in earnest. While the ACA will be helpful for some patients who gain access to insurance coverage, the legislation will not fix the health care crisis facing our state and nation. Even with the ACA fully enacted, more than 200,000 Minnesotans will be left out of the system completely (uninsured) and thousands more will remain woefully underinsured. PNHP’s goal remains comprehensive health care for ALL Minnesotans, and the ACA will not get us there.
In Minnesota, we can and should hold ourselves to a higher standard. By enacting a single-payer, Medicare-for-all system, we can show the nation what happens when individuals flourish and fulfill their productive potential without fear of financial ruin should they become ill. By severing our unhealthy relationship with a private insurance industry that amasses great wealth at the expense of sick patients, we can save a tremendous amount of money and actually spend it on health care. The Lewin study (March 2012) showed us that the administrative simplicity of a single-payer system in Minnesota would lower health care spending while covering everyone with comprehensive care.
— Ann Settgast, M.D., and Elizabeth Frost, M.D., co-chairs, Minnesota Chapter, Physicians for a National Health Program