Health Care Reform Nationally and in California and Our Elected Officials

JOIN the Healthcare Action Committee at the Cañada Crescenta Democratic Club.

Through national health insurance, we can provide a decent health care system for the benefit of the people of this land. We can make health care a basic right for all, not just an expensive privilege for the few.” Ted Kennedy

The Need for Reform

The cost of health insurance in the U.S. has risen at a rate far outpacing increases in wages over the past decade.

When our health care system is compared with systems in 11 other high income countries:

  • we spend more, have poorer outcomes and have more financial barriers
  • we spend more on health care and less on social services
  • we don’t receive good value in health care because our prices are higher

The ACA was a big improvement but there are still problems of access and affordability.

Republicans continue to attack Medicaid and the ACA even though 60% of all Americans, including 46% of Republicans and 56% of physicians favor Medicare-for-all.

Medicare is an efficient system with only 3% of every dollar spent going toward administrative costs. Under insurance, 69% of every dollar goes to medical care and 31% goes to medical overhead, administration and insurance profits.

National Level

H.R. 676 currently (as of 12/15/17) has 120 co-sponsors–up from just 49 legislators in 2015. Our Congress member, Adam Schiff became a co-sponsor on 06/22/2017. This would be the most comprehensive, national single-payer legislation to date.

S. B. 1804, the Medicare-for-All Act of 2017 was introduced by Senator Bernie Sanders on 9/17/2017. It will improve and expand Medicare for all Americans. When it was introduced 16 senators including Kamala Harris, co-sponsored the bill.

State Level

In February 2017 Senators Ricardo Lara and Toni Atkins introduced SB 562, The Healthy California Act. Our state assembly member, Laura Friedman is a co-author. It passed the Senate in June with Anthony Portantino, our state senator voting in favor of it. In June, Speaker of the House, Anthony Rendon stalled the bill, tabling it for a year instead of allowing it to move forward legislatively. There is a Select Committee on Health Care that has had 3 hearings so far with another hearing to take place in February. Select Committees cannot legislate. Our state assembly member, Laura Friedman who is a co-sponsor of SB 562, is on the Select Committee and is a strong advocate for improving the health care system in California. You can access the hearings on the State Assembly CalChannel. You can call Anthony Rendon’s office at (916) 319-2063 and urge him to move forward on SB 562. Advocates across California have been at rallies, town halls and canvassing door-to-door to promote SB 562. You can learn more about SB 562 at:

The California Democratic Party, Los Angeles County Democratic Party and the Cañada Crescenta Democratic Club have endorsed SB 562.

Websites and Groups for Health Care Advocacy

Health Care for All:

Physicians for a National Health Program:

Labor United for Universal Healthcare:

Movies And Videos

Fix It: Healthcare at the Tipping Point:

Sick Around the World, TR Reid on YouTube

Big Pharma: Market Failure on Vimeo


How to Think about “Medicare for All” by James A. Morone, Ph.D. in the New England Journal of Medicine: