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July/August 2019 e.Bulletin

A Tale of Two Claims Systems, HCFA-WA 2020 Strategy, Top Takeaways from Single-Paper Reports and more in this e.Bulletin!

The Eye Popping Tale of Two Claims Systems 

When economists talk about the burden of administrative overhead in the current US health care system and the potential savings to be recovered from simplifying the system, what are they talking about exactly? These two flow charts make it abundantly clear that the tortuous claims system is a very large part of the cost problem in the US, and that a single-payer system is the cure.

Henry Broeska, an expert on Health Care Administration, concludes: "Health economists analyzing a single-payer system don't account for enough of the savings derived from the elimination of our chaotic claims processing methods."

Advocacy Tip: Take a screenshot or download the image and regale your friends, family, elected officials, and doctors. Imagine recovering from an illness or injury or being chronically ill and having to navigate this system.

U.S. Claims Processing System (click to enlarge):

By the way, the author says, "In fact, the illustration doesn't include nearly enough features; there are layers upon layers of processes and rules that sit below what is shown on top."

To see the details and Canada's single-payer claims system, and more about claims waste, read our blog post.

Message from HCFA-WA President: Washington Isn't Waiting

As we take time to connect with family and friends during this summer recess, we are also planning our work for the coming year. For 2020, we have a three-pronged strategy:

1. Universal Health Care Work Group. We are happy to report that nearly 1/3 of the Work Group is comprised of single-payer supporters and include three of our Board Members: Kelly Powers, Ronald Shure, Sherry Weinberg, MD, and two of our Spokane members: Lynette Vehrs and Denny Dellwo, a former state legislator. The first Work Group meeting will be in September. Meetings will be open to the public, and there will be time allotted at each meeting for public comments.

2. Advocate for the State-Based Universal Health Care Act (SBUHC Act) that is due to be introduced into the U.S. Congress, possibly as early as this fall. Federal support - both financial and regulatory - would smooth the way for state-based single-payer plans.

Your Action Needed: There is something you can do immediately and quickly... Please email Rep. Ro Khanna (CA-17) to let him know that we are counting on him to reintroduce the bill, and why it is important to you.

3. Set the Table for Single-Payer with More Legislation. We are continuing to work with key leadership and universal health care champions to develop legislation that will move us closer to providing affordable and accessible healthcare for our state's residents.

Health Care for All-Washington is the leading group in Washington state dedicated to fighting for single-payer healthcare for all Washington residents. With your support, we continue the movement for high quality, sustainable, affordable, publicly financed, privately delivered health coverage for all Washington residents. We hope you will support our advocacy work.

No donation is too large or too small! Thank you for your continued support of our work. Happy Summer and stay tuned for developments! -- Marcia Stedman, President

Top Takeaways for Single-Payer Advocates from the WSIPP Reports

We took a look at the Single-Payer and Universal Health Care Interim and Final Reports by the Washington Institute for Public Policy and boiled them down to four takeaways for single-payer advocates:

Health care is too expensive for Washingtonians. We have evidence that single-payer is less expensive and more equitable. There are challenges to implementation. We must understand them to overcome them.

In 2018, HCFA-WA successfully lobbied for this study. We wanted legislators to see evidence that single-payer health care is a viable, desirable model and should be brought to the table in developing health reform in Olympia.

One thing the report was not tasked with was quantifying the health care crisis for Washington families. This is a vital part of the message we want lawmakers to understand, and we will continue to bring it forward. Read our Top Takeaways here.

Watch the WSIPP presentation on the Final Report to the Joint Select Committee on Health Care Oversight in July. It begins at 1:15:17

Responses to Health Care Debates: Take My Employer-Based Health Care. Please. & Representative Jayapal's Op-Ed

Representative Pramila Jayapal published the Op-Ed It's Time for Democrats to get their facts right on Medicare-for-All in the Washington Post last week following the July Democratic Debates. In it, she responds to the conservative talking points raised during the debates.

And in a similar vein, a worker wrote an Op-Ed on explaining that people do not really “like” their private health insurance, even in Seattle!


Upcoming Events

Sat,  Aug 10


Rep. Suzan DelBene (Congressional District -1) Town Hall - Lake Stevens
(10:00 am, Cavelero Mid High School, 8220-24th Street SE, Lake Stevens)

National Nurses United invites us to pack this town hall with Medicare for All supporters.


TBD, Aug


Rep. Suzan DelBene (Congressional District -1) Town Hall - Redmond
(TBD - keep checking for details)

National Nurses United invites us to pack this town hall with Medicare for All supporters.

 Wed,  Aug 21


Physicians for a National Health Program - Western Washington August Meeting, Seattle
(7:30 pm, Swedish/Cherry Hill)

Valentina Warner, MD, Family Physician at Neighborcare's Rainier Beach Clinic will talk about how unionization of all employees into a single bargaining unit has solidified care in the clinic. Read Dr. Warner's Op-Ed in the South Seattle Emerald. The meeting will be available by ZOOM - or dial in - 1 669 900 6833

TBD, Sept


Universal Health Care Work Group, WA State Health Care Authority, TBD

We will post the meeting details on our website as soon as we know them.

Fri, Oct 18 - Sun, Oct 20


2019 Single-Payer Strategy Conference, Portland, OR
Register now.

This nearby conference will be a great opportunity to network with advocates from other One Payer States. "Healthcare-NOW and the Labor Campaign for Single Payer Healthcare invite you to join hundreds of activists for a weekend of inspiration and strategy to win single-payer national healthcare!" 
Early bird registration fee ends August 30th.

Registration ends when 500 participants sign up. One workshop is already full.

Regular Contributors - Editor: Kelly Powers Communications  Specialist: Sydnie Jones Health News Contributor: Rich Lague
President: Marcia Stedman ★  

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