Hot Topics – Medicaid Expansion Under the Affordable Care Act Remains An Issue For The Upcoming Legislative Session

by Alice Knapp, Attorney and Maine AllCare Board Member The Supreme Court’s ACA decision last year striking down the planned withholding of all Medicaid funds from states declining Medicaid expansion paved the way for Governor LePage’s successful effort to drop more than 44,000 Mainers from MaineCare’s rolls this year. LePage argued program’s costs had become unsustainable with 27% of Mainers enrolled, including middle class families meeting strict...

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Hot Topics – Single-payer would cut costs, improve care

By John Benziger, M.D., Kennebec (Maine) Journal, Letters, Feb. 11, 2016 Just as the tobacco and fossil-fuel industries sponsored “experts” to perpetuate the idea that their industries were harmless, the for-profit American heath care industry is now engaging in misinformation claiming Bernie Sander’s single-payer system would “break the bank.” The truth is that an “Improved Medicare For All” single-payer system would cut costs drastically and provide coverage...

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Letters from the voters – Universal care the answer

I would like to thank columnist Matthew Gagnon for publicly acknowledging that a bad economy results in actual human suffering rather than just reduced earnings and profits in his Jan. 7 Pine Tree Politics column. With this said, now we as a state can focus on what can be done about improving our economic circumstances to help Mainers and reduce their economic dependence on government help. To...

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Letters from voters – Maine Doctors Support Single Payer

I was interested to read the article in Friday’s Times Record about the “Broader health care debate for 2016.” Giving prominence to “single payer” makes sense because only a single-payer plan can cover everyone for all medically necessary care, eliminate financial barriers to care, and allow free choice of doctor and hospital. Single payer healthcare would also control costs. Noted healthcare economist Dr. William Hsiao, when he...

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I had health insurance and they didn’t . . .

Editor’s Note: Maine State Senator Troy Jackson speaking to the Legislature on May 20, 2013; the crux of the speech is his personal story about a young friend and fellow lumberman who died for lack of health insurance. It is a simple and heartfelt argument for universal access to health care by everyone in Maine, regardless of age, gender, employment or ability to pay. Please watch this legislator/workingman’s...

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Medicare at Age 50: Building on Its Success

By Nancy Altman Medicare — signed into law fifty years ago, on July 30, 1965 — was supposed to be just the first step. For the fifty years before Medicare’s enactment, progressives had fought unsuccessfully for universal, government-provided health insurance. In 1912, President Theodore Roosevelt’s Progressive Party platform advocated universal, government-sponsored, health insurance, but he was defeated in his quest for another term as president. In 1917,...

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A Prescription for ALL Americans – Expand and Improve Medicare

Maine AllCare board member Suzanne Roberts, MD, MDiv spoke at the Portland celebration of Medicare’s 50th birthday on July 30, 2015 Hello Everyone! My name is Suzanne Roberts and I am a doctor. I practice Primary Care Internal Medicine in Old Orchard Beach Maine. I am the Vice President of MaineAllCare, which is the Maine chapter of a national organization called Physicians for a National Health Program....

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River Valley Chapter rocks!

Mitzi and Kim Sequoia of the River Valley Chapter of Maine AllCare chat with Monica Wood of Portland at the Fourth of July events at Hosmer Field in Rumford. Throughout the day Chapter members handed out literature and lemonade and spoke with a large number of local residents and some visitors to the area. An additional feature of the booth was a free gift basket that was...

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Maine AllCare River Valley Chapter Report – Rumford

The Maine AllCare River Valley chapter gathered at the Rumford library for its second meeting on April 18 to share updates and formulate a plan for the next few months. Group leader Joe Sirois spoke of the legislative committee meeting in Augusta in March, at which time Maine citizens presented testimony on the urgent need for improved and equitable health care. Joe was among the speakers, and...

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Update – LD 384 receives bipartisan support

LD 384 (as amended) the “Resolve, to Study the Design and Implementation of Options for a Universal Health Care Plan in Maine” passed by a vote of 10 to 1 by the Insurance and Financial Services Committe of the Legislature – only Rep. Wallace voted against it. Sen. Whittemore and Rep. Melaragno were absent. After revisions to the language, the bill will be going before the full...

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