Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Something vs. Nothing ought to win every time . . .

. . . but it's uncomfortably close. The New England Journal of Medicine informs thusly:

The editors invited the Democratic and Republican presidential nominees, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, to answer the following question for Journal readers: What specific changes in policy do you support to improve access to care, improve quality of care, and control health care costs for our nation? Secretary Clinton responded. Mr. Trump did not respond.
I expect he found it difficult what with his 200 word vocabulary. Anyway, you can read Hillary Clinton's response here. Sure, there's a lot of rhetoric in there and some non-specific promises but there are also some very specific, real and progressive items. Of course, they won't get through Congress unless Nov. 8 is nuclear, but for what it's worth here are a few highlights:

  • Enhance tax credits to make insurance on the exchanges more affordable
  • Public option in every state
  • Medicare buy-in for people 55 and older*
  • Streamline approval of generic drugs
  • Require drug companies to justify their prices
  • Allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices
  • Expand payment reform
  • Promote integrated medical and mental health care
  • Expand funding for community health centers
  • Assure access to affordable contraception and abortion
  • Increase investment in medical research 
This is a real, progressive platform that would make a huge difference in people's lives. You can vote for it, or you can vote for nothing.

*Sets up the slippery slope to single payer national health care, in case you didn't get that.

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