Single Payer Medicare Plan Pushed By Senator Bernie Sanders

A single payer Medicare Plan is being promoted by Senator Bernie Sanders as he campaigns to become the Democratic presidential nominee. If passed into law, single payer medicare would effectively eliminate the private payer sector. This proposal is very popular among progressives in the Democratic Party.


Critics, on the other hand, contend that it’d a bad idea as single payer will drive up costs. Taxes will have to be increased to allow everyone to be covered. Instead, Congress should fix the current system. They contend that allowing free-markets to set prices will actually lower costs for consumers — by fostering competition.


Under a single-payer system, all residents of the United States would be covered for all medically necessary services. These services will include doctor, hospital, preventive, long-term care, and mental health. Also covered will be reproductive health care, dental, vision, prescription drug and medical supply costs.


Indeed, researchers estimate that a single payer medicare plan will cost the government between $25 trillion to $35 trillion dollars over ten years. Taxes will go up.



single payer medicare




Single Payer Medicare: Who/What Gets Covered?

According to the Sanders’ campaign, who gets covered and what it will all cost are outlined below:

  • Americans younger than 19 and older than 55 would be enrolled first in the new program.
  • Everyone else could buy into the plan on the Obamacare marketplaces one year after the law is enacted.
  • Employers could buy a public plan for their employees during that one-year transition.
  • After then, everyone would be automatically enrolled in the system.
  • While not specifically expressed, the bill is intended to be inclusive of undocumented immigrants.
  • Private insurers would not be able to compete with the same coverage provided by Medicare for All. They could only offer coverage on elective procedures, such as cosmetic surgery, something that to date, has not been covered by most commercial insurers.
  • Coverage would be expansive and would cost nothing to the consumer.
  • Community and home-based long-term care would be covered. Medicaid would continue to cover institutional care, and states would determine the standard of eligibility.
  • The bill would be paid for through a progressive tax on workers and employers, an increase in taxes on the wealthy and a large fee on financial institutions.


It appears that senior citizens will not be immediately covered under this plan, they will have to wait a year. Even then, health issues specific to seniors are not addressed.


Let’s see what happens.

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