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Bill offers universal health care to New Yorkers

May 16, 2012

ALBANY, NY —All New York residents would receive comprehensive health coverage under “New York Health,” a universal health care bill introduced on May 8 by Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard N. Gottfried and Senate Health Committee Ranker Thomas K. Duane. The legislation is co-sponsored by 69 other legislators. The legislators were joined by dozens of health professionals and health care advocates for their annual lobby day.

Four years ago, Gottfried pushed successfully to fund a study to determine the most cost-effective way to provide New Yorkers with universal health care. The study found a single-payer system was the best fit. The study, completed before the national discussion of Obama’s Affordable Care Act, concluded that New York could save an estimated $20 billion per year by 2019.

At the press conference announcing the bill, Duane linked a lack of universal health care in New York to the lobbying power of insurance companies. Duane pointed out that with campaign reform, which the governor backs, the power of insurance companies over legislation should decrease, opening the door for universal health care.