Written by Donald Kollisch, M.D. and Heather Stockwell
State-based SP organizations
Rights & Democracy NH https://www.radnh.org/med4all/
National partners with strong SP campaigns
People’s Action <https://peoplesaction.org/>
The Center for Popular Democracy <https://populardemocracy.org/>
NESRI- National Economic & Social Rights Initiative https://www.nesri.org/
National Nurses United https://medicare4all.org/
State-based SP bills
None for 2020 session; in 2019 HP697 relative to Medicare for All; HB180 establishing a commission to explore New England compact for a regional SP plan; HB604 to assess benefits and costs of “healthcare for all” program.
Sponsors: Peter Schmidt, Jerry Knirk, Martha Hennessey
Summary: All 3 bills voted down (only one came out of committee)
Anticipate Medicaid Public Option (Buy-in) bill and another bill for a regional single-payer system.
Obstacles to SP in the current context
- NH has no income tax or sales tax, and a tradition and culture of “small government.” Expansion of government role and fiscal responsibility “is a non-starter for many in the state.”
- Average voters don’t understand a lot about how their healthcare works (or doesn’t work) now, so it makes it harder to understand how to rebuild it. NH needs a serious education plan at all levels—especially physician groups, business groups such as Rotaries, and general public.
- You are not allowed to submit 2 alike bills during the same session so we have to wait a year to have another chance to submit another round.
- There are 400 state reps to lobby.
- Coalition convened by Granite State Progress decided not to come out for Medicare for All legislation. They are more focused on ACA and Medicaid expansion.
Advantages for SP in current context
Since NH has the First-in-the-Nation presidential primary, we are seeking a presence at all presentations, rallies, and debates. Therefore, this year there will be lots of opportunities to educate candidates and their audiences on the general topic of needed health care reform when the candidates campaign in NH.
Goals for SP movement 2019-2020
Strong Healthcare for All plank in “People’s Platform” https://www.radnh.org/nh-peoples-platform/
RADNH mainly organizes around issues, but they also do some electoral work and have initiatives for developing leaders. They generally endorse in down ballot races, working to elect people who champion issues (like SP) and will co-govern with them.
More national focus in Presidential election year. Continued focus on EDUCATION of general audiences.
Hosting forums, like the Presidential Forum on October 13th at the University of NH in Durham in conjunction with national partners.
Where can people find news about Single Payer in your state and/or join a group?
https://www.radnh.org/med4all/ (Look for Healthcare Justice Team, facilitated by Stockwell)
https://www.facebook.com/medicareforallnh/ (separate Facebook page, with frequent posts)