Today we have a new Congress and a new opportunity to push for National Improved Medicare for All (NIMA). The current legislation expires and members of Congress will need to introduce new bills.
For the past 16 years, Congressman John Conyers introduced HR 676, our gold standard bill, in every new session of Congress. To keep the same bill number, he had to wait for that number to be available. We can expect that to happen at the end of January or the beginning of February.
Without Rep. Conyers, we do not yet have a definite lead sponsor. Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal is interested, but is conducting a rewrite of the bill, making it much longer. She has only shared the draft bill with a few people.
We understand from activists who are in touch with Rep. Jayapal that she is considering whether to release the text. This is the time to weigh in. And activists are speaking to other Congress members about being a lead sponsor for HR 676 as written.
We are gaining momentum in the movement for NIMA. Now we need to make a big push for more co-sponsors, for co-sponsors to actively promote NIMA and for hearings in Congress.
Don’t miss the Health Over Profit for Everyone National Call on Monday, January 7 at 9:00 pm Eastern/6:00 pm Pacific. We will discuss the rest of the strategic plan created at the HOPE retreat in Oakland. Read the report and summary from that retreat. And listen to the last national call where the plan was discussed.
If you are already registered for the national call, you will be sent reminders with your call-in information. If you don’t receive them, check your spam. If you have not already registered for the call, CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.
1. Become a Media Mobilizer by filling out this survey. Media Mobilizers will use traditional and social media to share information about NIMA and counter misinformation. Our first social media training will be on January 9 at 8:00 pm Eastern/3:00 pm Pacific. And let us know at MedicareForAll@epspan.org.
2. Become a Single Payer Educator by filling out this survey. Single Payer Educators (previously called Citizen Lobbyists) will be in regular contact with their Member of Congress’ health staffer to educate them about NIMA and answer questions they may have. And let us know at MedicareForAll@epspan.org.
In the News:
1. Ralph Nader provides us with twenty five reasons why Canadian health care is superior to the system in the United States. These are useful when talking to people about why we need NIMA.
2. With the new year comes new insurance plans. 8.5 million people signed up for health insurance this year under the ACA, which is 4% fewer than 2018. Here are stories from some of the people who signed up – high premiums, high out-of-pocket costs, high frustration and some people who are going without. One couple is working five jobs to pay off medical costs, and that is with health insurance.
3. And a new study finds more than half of people in the United States delay or go without health care.
This is why we are working to win National Improved Medicare for All.
Sincerely, Margaret Flowers and the HOPE team