Statement from National Nurses United Executive Director Bonnie Castillo, RN: Budget Committee Hearing Shows Momentum for Medicare for All
Following today’s hearing on single-payer health care in the House Budget Committee, National Nurses United (NNU) issued the following statement:
“Today’s Budget Committee hearing showed conclusively that Medicare for All is a win-win for Americans. Testimony from Congressional Budget Office (CBO) staff only confirmed what we nurses have been saying for years: a single-payer Medicare for All system will not only save lives, but will also save money at the same time. This is the best way to achieve universal health care and guarantee a quality, single standard of care for everyone.
The fact that Rep. Lloyd Doggett, Chairman of the Health Subcommittee of Ways and Means, has now signed on to the Medicare for All Act of 2019 is also testimony that this legislation has legs. We praise Rep. Doggett for endorsing Medicare for All and urge others to follow in his footsteps.
After all these years of exploding costs under our for-profit health care system, Medicare for All will constrain costs and make things more efficient than our current failure of a system. As nurses, we see the devastating effects on our patients every day. We were happy to see the CBO point out that having all doctors in one big network would lead to greater choice for patients, and that rural hospitals will be better funded under Medicare for All. Furthermore, if employers don’t have to pay into health care, that money can go to increasing wages for workers.
Nurses agree completely with Budget Committee Chairman Rep. John Yarmuth that ‘it is no longer a matter of IF we will have a single-payer health care system in our country, but WHEN.’ We will continue to pressure our elected officials and to build the grassroots movement in support of Medicare for All, so that ‘when’ is sooner rather than later. Our patients cannot wait.”