Thursday, 12 March 2015 00:00

Study: Single-payer health would save $45b in N.Y.

Written by  Claire Hughes | Times Union
Assemblyman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan) is a main support of single-payer health care in New York. He says the current system doesn't work. Assemblyman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan) is a main support of single-payer health care in New York. He says the current system doesn't work.

A single-payer or universal health plan would save New Yorkers $45 billion a year in health-care expenditures, according to a study released Tuesday by a University of Massachusetts at Amherst professor.

If such a taxpayer-supported health plan were enacted, 98 percent of New York households would pay less than they do now and 200,000 jobs would be created due to the savings accrued by business, according to Gerald Friedman, chair of the Economics Department at UMass Amherst.

“This really changes the debate in New York,” said state Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried, D-Manhattan.

Gottfried has for 14 years proposed a single-payer health system in New York. Some labor unions and doctors groups have supported the idea; the insurance industry, which would become unnecessary, oppose it.

Friedman’s study shows $71 billion would be saved in the first year of a universal health plan in New York:

* $26.5 billion by eliminating private health insurance administration and profit;

* $20.7 billion by reducing medical practitioners’ administration of health insurance claims;

* $2 billion by eliminating employer administration of health insurance benefits;

* $5.4 billion by reducing fraudulent billing; and

* $16.3 billion by capturing savings from overpriced drugs and medical devices.

Link to original article from the Times Union

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