After the start date of Nov. 30, 2021 there is a lack of momentum and urgency in creating a universal health care system. There is still no unified vision or goal and the lack of a deadline or a clear mandate from the legislature has muddled the process even more. Read more to learn our solutions and how you can help.
The UHCC is a year and a half late in presenting these elements of their Nov. 2022 report as required by SB 5399:
- A strategy for implementable changes to Washington's health care financing and delivery system
An inventory of key universal health care system elements including
- financing system with single-payer system
- eligibility and enrollment
- covered benefits
- provider participation
- payment, cost containment and patient cost sharing
Despite two presentations on universal single-payer health care systems: one being Oregon’s Universal Health Care Task Force with the other on Washington’s existing Indian Health Care System, and Rep. Joe Schmick’s repeated questions: who’s in and who’s out, what is the intent and scope of covered services, the Commission has yet to define these elements or their vision/goal. This lack of direction from the UHCC delays not only the work of its Finance Technical Advisory Committee (FTAC), but also the realization of a universal health care system as described in the law that created it.
Specific transitional solutions have been on the Commission’s Agenda for the past two months, but lack of time and staff support have prevented meaningful discussion, which is long overdue.
These promising developments give us hope:
- First, thanks to HCFA-WA’s strong advocacy, the 2023-25 state budget includes funding to hire consultants and staff dedicated solely to assisting the Commission’s work. We expect to see an updated Work Plan at the Commission’s August 10th meeting.
- Second, a third single-payer presentation, this time on the Washington Health Trust bill as proposed in SB 5335, is on the August meeting agenda.
Meetings are in person at the Health Care Authority offices in Olympia as well as on Zoom:
September 14 - 2-4 pm FTAC meeting
The meetings continue to welcome Public Comments.
Sign up to provide public comment to the FTAC by 5 p.m. on September 13th.
Written comments are accepted anytime.
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