(Video of event by Stephen Mattingly is here.)
On October 24, 2019, at 7 pm, economist Gerald Friedman presented the Economic Case for Medicare for All to a full house at the Unitarian Church on 4th street in downtown Louisville.
Dr. Karen Krigger, who practices Family and Geriatric Medicine in Louisville, opened the program with remarks about the current crises in health care in Louisville.
Kentuckians came from as far away as Richmond to hear Dr. Friedman.
Dr. Garrett Adams, pediatrician and past president of the Physicians for a National Health Program, introduced Friedman who earned his doctorate in economics at Harvard and currently teaches at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Dr. Friedman is an expert on the financing of single payer health care systems. He studied HR 676, the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All legislation, introduced in the House by Congressman John Conyers.
He found that over $500 billion could be saved each year by switching to this single payer program.
Dr. Friedman’s presentation gave compelling evidence that people in the United States are victims of an inferior health care system that brings suffering and early death to those who do not have the ability to pay the high cost of care.
He presented evidence that the U. S. spends more than twice, per capita, on health care as the other wealthy countries yet has poorer outcomes in life expectancy and other measures of quality.
He showed that, contrary to insurance company claims, additional funds spent on care produce improved outcomes and longevity. He gave the figures that prove that co-pays and deductibles and the high cost of drugs are causing irreparable harm to Americans.
His studies show that one-third of Americans are going without necessary care because of the high costs even for those who have health insurance plans.
He gave compelling evidence that a national single payer health care system, an improved Medicare for All, would save money yet improve care for those who now have insurance and extend those benefits to the 3o million who have been left without coverage despite the gains of the Affordable Care Act.
The program can be seen on the Kentuckians for Single Payer Health Care facebook page, thanks to medical student Sarah Parker.