AMSA (American Medical Student Association), April 12, 2019
The American Medical Student Association (AMSA) stands in strong support of Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s Medicare for All Act of 2019, H.R. 1384, and of Sen. Bernie Sanders Medicare for All Act, S. 1129. As an organization of future physicians, AMSA seeks to improve the health and enhance healthcare access for everyone in America, true healthcare for all; and the federal single-payer system proposed in the Medicare for All Act would be a momentous step toward that vision.
The current system creates a huge administrative burden that takes physicians away from patient care, allows pharmaceutical companies to drive up costs of medicines, and makes essential healthcare services unaffordable for many. As AMSA National President Perry Tsai, M.D., Ph.D., remarked at the introduction of Sen. Sanders’ bill, “For each thing we learn on our way to becoming physicians who care for patients, we find one more thing that will prevent us from caring for our patients…Our dream [of caring for patients] is turning into a nightmare, and we will not stand for it.” Comprehensive health coverage through Medicare for All would result in lower administrative costs, increased healthcare access for everyone regardless of employment, and reduced burdens on physicians such that they can spend more energy on patient care.
“As medical trainees, we have witnessed on multiple occasions how the current healthcare system fails to provide affordable, high quality, comprehensive care to all patients and their families,” Avanthi Jayaweera, AMSA’s Education and Advocacy Fellow, said. “We are inheriting a system that puts profits over our patients’ lives. The next generation of physicians want Medicare for All to allow for a future where we can put our patients first just as we are taught in our clinical training.”
AMSA is proud to support these bills to establish Medicare for All and is organizing a Health Care for All Week of Action, April 15-19, in order to educate and engage medical trainees to ask their members of Congress to support Medicare for All. Hanan Rakine, co-chair of AMSA’s Health Care for All Campaign, stresses, “It is our role as future health care professionals to advocate for our patients’ well-being and right to health care.”
Through our Health Care for All Campaign, AMSA has over 50 years of experience fighting for equitable, efficient and quality universal health care coverage. Unburdened by conflicts-of-interest, medical students are fighting for the healthcare system that our nation and our communities need, not the system pharmaceutical and insurance companies have created. As the largest body of future doctors in the U.S., AMSA is fighting for a future that puts patients ahead of special interests. AMSA believes that no person should go without needed emergent or preventive health care services. AMSA believes that these proposals released by Rep. Jayapal and Sen. Sanders will address the current inequities of the U.S. healthcare system by ensuring every individual living in the U.S. has access to comprehensive health care benefits.
About the American Medical Student Association:
AMSA is the oldest and largest independent association of physicians-in-training in the United States. Founded in 1950, AMSA is a student-governed, non-profit organization committed to representing physicians-in-training, advocating for quality and affordable health care for all, and building the next generation of physician leaders.
By Don McCanne, M.D.
With AMSA’s endorsement of both Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s and Sen. Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All Acts of 2019, we know that the future of health care is in very good hands.
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