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Help Plan Next Steps Towards Single Payer in Oregon

Register now for the May 30th HCAO Annual Meeting

Health Care for All-Oregon will discuss next steps in our campaign for single payer health care in Oregon at the HCAO Annual Meeting Saturday, May 30, 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m, at the SEIU 503 Ballroom, 6401 SE Foster, Portland. Representatives of our 110 member organizations and chapters, as well as other HCAO activists from around the state will attend (you are invited, register now!), review progress during the 2015 legislative session and plan next steps.

Also at the May 30 HCAO Annual Meeting, we will get updates from Senator Michael Dembrow on progress on SB 631 (the Health Care for All Oregon Plan), HB 2828 (the Health Care Study Bill) and other legislation supported by HCAO during the 2015 legislative session.

Finally, members will have the opportunity to consider and vote on critical bylaw revisions and a slate of leaders including the Board of Directors and Officers. Nominations are also accepted from the floor.  

Click HERE for the May 30 HCAO Membership Meeting agenda.                

See you there!                                                                   

 -Lee Mercer, HCAO Board President

Register now for the May 30th HCAO Annual Meeting

The Grand Bargain vs. Real Health Care and Budgetary Reform,

By Camilo Marquez MD

What are the essential elements of the health care crisis? I would say increasing costs, relative poor outcome per unit of cost, lack of access to care due to lack of insurance coverage and health care disparities, together with unequal standards of care. All of these issues are related to the way health care resources are allocated. We have not resolved as a society how those resources should be allocated or on which factors, moral, political or economic, should the decision be based. In the United States our health care system is highly fragmented, and each of these factors is involved to different degrees in guiding the decisions in different segments of the system. In countries which have a unified social insurance program, it would be easier to identify the principles by which the distribution and level of social welfare benefits are governed.

A governmental budget is a political, social, economic and moral document. What would we appreciate of those factors in an analysis of the federal budget? And even more challenging, what would we learn of an assessment of the budget-making process? I think here one might invoke the proscription of knowing how a piece of legislation or a sausage is made. Someone said that politics is the authoritative allocation of scarce resources. While I thought that was the purview of economics, it suggests that control over resources is governed by the exercise of political power. This notion brings us to consider the current issue under discussion in Washington and the media, the so-called “Grand Bargain/Fiscal Cliff” debate over the reduction of budget deficits.

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Post election deficit deal threatens Medicare and Social Security

By: Kay Tillow Saturday October 6, 2012 2:46 pm

The solution is Improved Medicare for All

After the November election, there will be a major effort in Congress to pass a budget deal that will make cuts in Social Security, raise the Medicare and Social Security eligibility age, and perhaps more–unless we act to stop it with a solution that is close at hand. 

There is agreement from the Wall Street Journal’s David Wessel to liberal economists Dean Baker and Paul Krugman that the pressure will be on to reach a Simpson/Bowles type of compromise.  Such a bipartisan plan would damage our most cherished programs and excuse the dastardly deed by asserting that the cuts are small and necessary because of the deficit. 

Those who relentlessly scream at us and finance ads to persuade us that the deficit threatens our grandchildren are obscuring the truth.  The fact is that the transfer of wealth from public funds and the rest of us to the super rich is the real crisis.  But those who have gorged themselves on this massive transfer of wealth also seek to undermine the Medicare and Social Security which are our grandchildren’s heritage from generations of struggles for a better life.