Today Governor Shumlin addressed the members of the House and Senate health care committees and called on them to reaffirm their commitment to transitioning to a single payer health care system in 2017. His remarks focused on the roll out of Vermont Health Connect and what this means for the state’s future health care plans.
The Governor also harped on the costs of our current health care system (20 cents of every dollar spent on health care) and said that with costs trending upwards, Vermont couldn’t afford to not push for reform. “Universal coverage for all Vermonters is not only the right thing to do, it’s the financially smart thing to do” he said.
VPIRG Consumer Protection Advocate Falko Schilling commented on the address saying, “The Governor highlighted what we have known all along, the Affordable Care Act does a lot, but it does not fix the underlying problems with our health care system. We need to remain committed to a system where everyone is covered not because of their job or how much money they make, but because they are Vermonters. We can’t afford to sit idly by while our health care system continues to take more and more money out of the pockets of hard working Vermonters.”
“Making sure that every Vermonter is covered will not be easy. As we have seen over the past few months, opponents of reform will take any opportunity to derail efforts to expand coverage. If their efforts succeed we will be left with the same old broken system where we pay more and get less. We deserve better. We deserve a health care system that is fair, transparent and does not leave anyone behind.”