HEALTH AND HEALTHCARE

 
We are the only major country on earth that doesn’t guarantee health care to all people as a right and yet we end up spending much more than they do, so I do believe that we have to move toward a Medicare for all, single-payer system.
— Senator Bernie Sanders
 

Healthcare is a basic right for everyone. We need a single payer system and a holistic approach to improving health in all our communities.

 

I support Medicare for All for the United States. If we cannot achieve that at the federal level, I support through a Single-Payer program in Massachusetts. If no federal initiative is forthcoming, I will work to find a path to Single-Payer within the Commonwealth or the Northeast.

 Our Constitution enshrines the principle that we have an inalienable right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” You simply cannot have “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” without access to healthcare. Health care is therefore not a privilege, but a right. Indeed, it is an inalienable right - one that cannot be taken away.

Mine is not a commitment of convenience. I was born with a severe genetic condition – hemophilia – and throughout my childhood my parents worried every day that I would be kicked off of their health insurance. Our completely screwed up health insurance system actually pushes companies to give the best insurance to people who are healthy and to exclude those who actually need medical care. It has been driven and distorted by the profits of insurance companies and Big Pharma for too long. This is morally cruel and economically damaging for the whole country.  I am able to walk today because I received health care in another country as a foreign resident. My commitment to universal access to healthcare is literally deep in my bones.

Reliable access to quality care is what gives parents, workers, and caregivers the peace of mind to focus on making life work.  Here in Massachusetts, we have the best medical care in the world. But not the fairest, smartest, or most broadly effective. We pioneered care for all in the US. Now we need to move onto a system that promotes public health for all.

 

As Governor I will:

  • Protect and expand Mass Health.

  • Move aggressively toward Single Payer.

  • Institute policies based on social determinants of health to promote healthy communities.

  • Move away from pay for service into whole health metrics.

  • Fully fund women’s health care.

  • Expand mental health and addiction services.

  • Address the serious epidemic of opioid dependence, with more in-state treatment centers, Safe Injection Sites and more.

  • Work with the Attorney General to recover costs of opioid addiction from companies that promoted their use for profit.

  • Unify data platforms for portability.

  • Protect our seniors, including their health care, medications, and living arrangements.

Our goal is that everyone in Massachusetts should have the chance to be:

  • Born wanted

  • Grow up healthy

  • Supported in crisis

  • Age in community

  • Die with dignity