Uninsured Numbers Show Mandate-Based Health Reforms Don't Work

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

Uninsured Numbers Show Mandate-Based Health Reforms Don't Work

WASHINGTON - Official estimates released Thursday by the Census Bureau showing a
marginal increase in the number of Americans without health insurance
in 2008 -- now estimated at 46.3 million, up from 45.7 million in 2007
-- mask the true dimensions of the problem, a national doctors' group
said.

Physicians for a National Health Program, a membership organization of
over 17,000 physicians, states: "Significantly, in Massachusetts, where
an individual-mandate health reform law, much like what President Obama
is proposing on a national scale, was passed in 2006, at least 352,000
people, or 5.5 percent of the population, remained uninsured in 2008.
That number was actually (but non-significantly) higher than the number
of uninsured in 2007, before strict enforcement of the individual and
employer mandates went into effect."



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STEFFIE WOOLHANDLER, M.D., M.P.H.
DAVID HIMMELSTEIN, M.D.
via Mark Almberg
Woolhandler and Himmelstein are professors of medicine at Harvard
Medical School and co-founders of Physicians for a National Health
Program. Woolhandler said today: "The legislation championed by the
president and the congressional leadership is a virtual clone of the
Massachusetts plan. [The census] numbers show that plans that require
people to buy private insurance don't work. Obama's plan to replicate
Massachusetts' reform nationally risks failure on a massive scale."

For further information see news release and also Woolhandler's testimony regarding the Massachusetts plan.

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