The U.S. House Rules Committee next week will hold the first-ever hearing on Medicare for All.
Committee Chair James McGovern (D-Mass.), U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) and U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) announced a 10 a.m. hearing on April 30 at the U.S. Capitol on the Medicare for All Act of 2019. The bill would expand Medicare “so that every person living in the United States has guaranteed access to health care with comprehensive benefits,” the press release said.
Dingell, who was first elected to the Southeast Michigan district in 2014, has carried on her family’s tradition of introducing legislation for universal health care.
She succeeded her husband, former U.S. Rep. John Dingell, the longest-serving member of Congress in history who introduced a single-payer health care bill every term. He passed away in February at the age of 92. He succeeded his father, John Dingell Sr., who began the fight for health care for all.
“The time is now to ensure that every American has access to quality, affordable healthcare,” Debbie Dingell said. “Medicare for All is the beginning of a national conversation about how to improve healthcare and bring down costs. Chairman McGovern’s leadership in holding this first-ever hearing on Medicare for All is a critical step in this long journey, but much work remains. We’re going to continue engaging stakeholders across the country to realize the vision of universal healthcare coverage.”
House Resolution 1384, sponsored by Jayapal, has more than 100 co-sponsors, including Dingell. Three others are from Michigan: U.S. Reps. Andy Levin (D-Bloomfield Twp.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Detroit) and Brenda Lawrence (D-Southfield).
Medicare for All has become a signature issue for progressives, as Democrats also have fought back against GOP cuts to the Affordable Care Act signed by former President Barack Obama.
“Even with passage of the Affordable Care Act, there are more than 70 million people either without coverage or have coverage that leaves them still unable to access medical care due to prohibitively high out-of-pocket costs,” Jayapal said. “There is no other developed country on the face of the Earth that has a health care system that is as fragmented and costly as ours. The health outcomes and barriers to care in America are the worst of any industrialized nation. Health care is a human right.”