Change.org is organizing the top “Ideas for Change in America” which they will present to the Obama Administration on inauguration day. Please help make single-payer healthcare one of those ideas.

According to Change.org, “The ‘Top 10 Ideas for America’ will be presented to the Obama Administration on Inauguration Day. We will then build a national campaign to advance each idea in Congress, marshaling the resources of Change.org, MySpace, and our dozens of partner organizations and millions of combined members.”

So, please visit www.change.org/ideas and vote for single-payer healthcare.

1 Comment

  1. Joseph A. Mungai on December 1, 2008 at 5:20 pm

    Single Payer Healthcare is preventative medicine when viewed in the context of all the major challenges facing our nation and the world.

    Michael Pollan on the PBS “Bill Moyers Journal” explains the far reaching implications and ramifications from our current economic crisis to climate change to national security and to the rise of diabetes. The video can be viewed at: http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/11282008/profile.html.

    Since many have brought up preventative medicine as part of the answer to our healthcare crisis it should include: truth in labeling on all foods, reducing/alleviating stress related diseases due to poverty, workplace environments, loss of jobs, homes, pensions, toxic chemicals and greenhouse gases. Changes in our epigenetic structures due to all these factors can hardly be blamed on the individual.

    Also consider that nearly one-third of our health-care costs are eaten up by overhead: marketing, billing, profits, denying coverage, and hassling patients and doctors. Insurance companies are using huge, commercially available prescription databases to screen out applicants based on their drug purchases. Certainly we can all agree that no one should be denied healthcare because our current health delivery system lacks confidentiality.

    While 30 cents of every dollar of health costs pays for overhead, private health insurance wastes $350 billion every year, Medicare costs 3 cents on the dollar. Today, rising health-care costs cause one-half of all personal bankruptcies, three-fourths of whom have insurance.

    In our current fiscal crisis these variables play an important role as we are losing more than 200,000 jobs every month and companies paying for employee healthcare can’t keep up or compete on the global market. The most current example are the selfish decisions made by executives in the auto industry and the stress related illnesses caused to those front-line employees laid off.

    Do we have the audacity to imagine a system that addresses the many variables causing sickness and injury? Any hope must come from compassion, clarity of purpose and a vision where:
    * Impartial Science directs our decisions through educating the public—preventative medicine.
    * The government would negotiate prices of prescription drugs to lower costs to the sick and injured—preventative medicine.
    * Doctors could order effective alternative/complementary medicine for those suffering side effects of Western medications and costs would be paid (preventative medicine).
    * No co-pays or deductibles, everyone is covered cradle to grave period!—preventative medicine.
    * Electronic records would foster continuity of care and reduce medical errors—the science of preventative medicine.
    * Complete data would be available so a professional board could determine best practices: what treatments work and which don’t—more science of preventative medicine.
    * Hospitals would be paid based on a global budget negotiated to cover their costs, rather than current practice of billing for each aspirin and each test. This would be compared to the preventable medical errors via open reporting as one measure to determine quality of care.
    * Further decrease costs by eliminating over-ordering expensive technology or reducing the costs of the technology (ex. energy efficient portable body imaging devices). Eliminate risks of unnecessary surgery performed by for-profit hospitals (science of preventative medicine).
    * Each person picks their own doctor not an insurance company. Expensive Emergency Rooms wouldn’t be overused by people who have no family doctor or available clinic—science of preventative medicine.
    * Independent of agri-business and the meat industry truthful food labeling by scientists would include health hazards of ingredients contained in the products as part of the science of preventative medicine.
    * Air and water purity actually regulated by scientists in government independent of the fossil fuel industry and other toxic polluters. Green jobs to save our health and planet as part of the science of preventative medicine.
    * Living wages paid to our neighbors and unemployment compensation enough to reduce the stress related illnesses of losing ones job–science of preventative medicine.
    * Diplomacy is used instead of killing innocent people in wars we initiate lowering injury and death rates and the overwhelming emotional and monetary expense to each of us, more preventative medicine.
    * Clear government oversight of corporations that led us to this place through greed and fraud—preventative medicine.
    * Laws equally applied to everyone in this country eliminating the stressors of disparate treatment—a Constitution of preventative medicine.

    Imagine a bill that provides everybody a card to present to a health-care provider for doctor, dentist, prescription drugs, complementary/alternative medicine, mental health, nursing home and home health care, eyeglasses and hearing aids.

    Imagine a system that places more stock in all life and the health of planet Earth instead of the exorbitant greed for-profit seen on Wall Street that has been educating children for decades.

    Hard to imagine — YES — But impossible to achieve when we stay silent.