Vermont Legislature Gets Closer to Single Payer Care Delivery

April 28, 2011
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The state’s Senate has just passed a bill that will now go to conference to reconcile differences between it and the House version. The governor all but says he’ll sign the single payer bill into law.

The state’s Senate has just passed a bill that will now go to conference to reconcile differences between it and the House version. The governor all but says he’ll sign the single payer bill into law. Vermont’s public delivery system will be known as Green Mountain Care.[1] The governor, a democrat, appears to be on an agenda to show the other 48 states that one-fits-all healthcare financing works — emphasizing quality and efficiency in delivery.

The state’s healthcare costs total around $350M annually. Backers of the delivery system tout the elimination of so-called administrative expenses in Vermont’s healthcare delivery. With all of the apparent excitement among single payer’s supporters, there are the detractors. Hospitals, health plans, and provider groups are rightly concerned about the cost to taxpayers; the normalization of deductibles and copays among potential beneficiaries (the state’s entire population); and the need to secure a waiver to pilot this entire system prior to 2014 — when supporters hope single payer is installed. An ambitious schedule, no doubt. History in the making? Perhaps. | LINK

  1. A five-member board would actually design the system, including what benefits are covered and how they’re paid for.

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