Medicare For All

Economists in Support of a Medicare for All Health Care System

Mehdi

An Open Letter to the Congress and People of the United States

May 21, 2019

As economists, we understand that a single-payer “Medicare for All” health insurance system for the U.S. can finance good-quality care for all U.S. residents as a basic right while still significantly reducing overall health care spending relative to the current exorbitant and wasteful system. Health care is not a service that follows standard market rules. It should therefore be provided as a public good.

Evidence from around the world demonstrates that publicly financed health care systems result in improved health outcomes, lower costs, and greater equity. As of 2017, the U.S. spent $3.3 trillion annually on health care. This equaled 17 percent of U.S. GDP, with average spending at about $10,000 per person. By contrast, Germany, France, Japan, Canada, the U.K., Australia, Spain and Italy spent between 9 – 11 percent of GDP on health care, averaging $3,400 to $5,700 per person. Yet average health outcomes in all of these countries are superior to those in the United States. In all of these countries, the public sector is predominant in financing heath care.

For these reasons the time is now to create a universal, single-payer, Medicare for All health care system in the United States.

Public financing for health is not a matter of raising new money for healthcare, but of reducing total healthcare outlays and distributing payments more equitably and efficiently. Implementing a unified single-payer system would reduce administrative costs and eliminate individuals’ and employers’ insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs. If combined with public control of drug prices and a dramatically simplified global budgeting system, a sensible Medicare financing system would reduce healthcare costs while guaranteeing access to comprehensive care and financial security to all.

As such, we support publicly and equitably financed health care through a Medicare for All system at the Federal level, as described in H.R. 1384 and S. 1129. We encourage Congress to move forward with implementing a public financed Medicare for All plan to achieve the equitable and affordable universal health care system that the American people need.

Signed,

  1. Randy Albelda, Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Boston
  2. Carolyn B. Aldana, Professor Emeritus, California State University, San Bernardino
  3. Mona Ali, Associate Professor of Economics, SUNY New Paltz
  4. Larry Allen, Professor of Economics, Lamar University
  5. Jack Amariglio, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Merrimack College
  6. Eileen Appelbaum, Co-Director and Senior Economist, Center for Economic and Policy Research
  7. Peter Arno, Senior Fellow & Director Health Policy Research, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  8. Michael Ash, Professor of Economics & Public Policy, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  9. Glen Atkinson, Emeritus Professor of Economics, University of Nevada, Reno
  10. M V Lee Badgett, Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  11. Ron Baiman, Assistant Professor of Economics, Benedictine University
  12. Dean Baker, Senior Economist, Center for Economic and Policy Research
  13. Erdogan Bakir, Associate Professor of Economics, Bucknell University
  14. Radhika Balakrishnan, Professor, Rutgers University
  15. Nina Banks, Associate Professor of Economics, Bucknell University
  16. David Barkin, Distinguished Professor, Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana
  17. Charles Barone, Professor Emeritus, Dickinson College
  18. Deepankar Basu, Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  19. Lourdes Beneria, Professor Emerita, Cornell University
  20. Peter H. Bent, Assistant Professor, American University of Paris
  21. Suzanne Bergeron, Professor, University of Michigan Dearborn
  22. Cyrus Bina, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics, University of Minnesota (Morris Campus), and Fellow, Economists for Peace and Security
  23. Josh Bivens, Research Director, Economic Policy Institute
  24. Robert A. Blecker, Professor of Economics, American University
  25. Peter Bohmer, Faculty in Economics and Political Economy, The Evergreen State College
  26. Howard Botwinick, Associate Professor of Economics, SUNY Cortland
  27. Roger Even Bove, Ph.D. in Economics, West Chester University (retired)
  28. James K. Boyce, Professor Emeritus, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  29. Robert Brenner, Director, Center for Social Theory and Comparative History, UCLA
  30. Michael Brün, Instructor, Heartland Community College
  31. Antonio Callari, Professor, Franklin and Marshall College
  32. Al Campbell, Emeritus Professor of Economics, University of Utah
  33. Martha Campbell, Associate Professor of Economics, Emeritus, SUNY Potsdam
  34. Jim Campen, Professor of Economics, Emeritus, University of Massachusetts Boston
  35. José Caraballo, Professor, University of Puerto Rico
  36. Scott Carter, Professor of Economics, The University of Tulsa
  37. James F Casey, Associate Professor of Economics, Washington and Lee University
  38. John Dennis Chasse, Professor Emeritus, SUNY College at Brockport
  39. Ying Chen, Assistant Professor of Economics, The New School
  40. Robert Chernomas, Professor of Economics, University of Manitoba
  41. Kimberly Christensen, Economics Professor, Sarah Lawrence College
  42. Douglas Cliggott, Lecturer, Economics, University of Massachusetts
  43. Nathaniel Cline, Associate Professor, University of Redlands
  44. Richard Cornwall, Professor Emeritus, Middlebury College
  45. James Crotty, Emeritus Professor, University of Massachusetts
  46. Dr. James Cypher, Professor of Economics, Universidad Autonoma de Zacatecas, Mexico, and Emeritus Professor, California State University
  47. Omar Dahi, Hampshire College
  48. Anita Dancs, Associate Professor of Economics, Western New England University
  49. Flavia Dantas, Associate Professor of Economics, SUNY Cortland
  50. Paul Davidson, Emeritus Professor Chair of Honor, University of Tennessee
  51. Charles Davis, Professor of Labor Studies, Indiana University
  52. Leila Davis, Assistant Professor , University of Massachusetts Boston
  53. Carmen Diana Deere, Distinguished Professor Emerita, University of Florida
  54. George DeMartino, Professor, JKSIS, University of Denver
  55. Firat Demir, Professor, University of Oklahoma
  56. James G. Devine, Professor of Economics, Loyola Marymount University
  57. Geert Dhondt, Associate Professor, John Jay College, CUNY
  58. Peter Dorman, Professor of Political Economy, Evergreen State College
  59. Richard Du Boff, Professor Emeritus, Bryn Mawr College
  60. Marie C. Duggan, Professor of Economics, Keene State College
  61. Amitava Krishna Dutt, Professor of Economics and Political Science, University of Notre Dame
  62. Nina Eichacker, Assistant Professor, University of Rhode Island
  63. David P Ellerman, Visiting Scholar, University of California at Riverside
  64. Gerald Epstein, Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  65. Thomas Ferguson, Professor Emeritus, University of Massachusetts Boston
  66. Ellen Fitzpatrick, Professor, Merrimack College
  67. Sean Flaherty, Professor of Economics, Franklin and Marshall College
  68. Nancy Folbre, Professor Emerita of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  69. Mariko Frame, Assistant Professor of Economics, Merrimack College
  70. Dania V. Francis, Assistant Professor, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  71. Anders Fremstad, Assistant Professor, Colorado State University
  72. Gerald Friedman, Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  73. James K. Galbraith, Professor, University of Texas at Austin
  74. Barbara Garson, Author, Money Makes the World Go Round
  75. Armagan Gezici, Associate Professor of Economics, Keene State College
  76. Helen Lachs Ginsburg, Professor Emerita of Economics, Brooklyn College/CUNY
  77. Mwangi Wa Githinji, Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  78. Art Goldsmith, Professor of Economics, Washington and Lee University
  79. Neva Goodwin, Co-director, GDAE, Tufts University
  80. Ulla Grapard, Professor of Economics and Women’s Studies, Emerita, Colgate University
  81. Robert Guttmann, Augustus B Weller Professor of Economics, Hofstra University
  82. Robin E Hahnel, Professor Emeritus, American University
  83. John Battaile Hall, Professor of Economics, Portland State University
  84. Jay Hamilton, Assistant Professor, John Jay College
  85. Greg P. Hannsgen, Founder and Blogger, Greg Hannsgen’s Economics Blog, and Research Associate, Levy Economics Institute of Bard College
  86. John T. Harvey, Professor of Economics, Texas Christian University
  87. Baban Hasnat, Professor of International Business, SUNY Brockport
  88. Erin Hayde, Consultant, World Bank
  89. F. Gregory Hayden, Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  90. Carol E. Heim, Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  91. John Forrest Henry, Senior Scholar, Levy Economics Institute, and Adjunct Professor, University of Missouri-Kansas City
  92. Conrad M. Herold, Associate Professor of Economics, Hofstra University
  93. P. Sai-wing Ho, Professor, University of Denver
  94. Joan Hoffman, Professor, John Jay College of Criminal Justice CUNY
  95. Barbara Hopkins, Professor, Wright State University
  96. Candace Howes, Professor of Economics, Connecticut College
  97. Eric Hoyt, Ph.D. in Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Research Director, Center for Employment Equity
  98. Julio Huato, Associate Professor of Economics, St. Francis College
  99. Joseph Michael Hunt, Instructor, Environmental and Health Policy, Harvard Uiversity
  100. Dorene Isenberg, Professor of Economics, University of Redlands
  101. Tae-Hee Jo, Associate Professor, SUNY Buffalo State
  102. Fadhel Kaboub, Associate Professor of Economics, Denison University, and President,Global Institute for Sustainable Prosperity
  103. Stephanie A Kelton, Professor of Economics and Public Policy, Stony Brook University, and Senior Economic Advisor, Bernie2020 Presidential Campaign
  104. Haider A Khan, John Evans Distinguished University Professor, University of Denver
  105. Mu-Jeong Kho, University College London, the University of London
  106. Marlene Kim, Professor, University of Massachusetts Boston
  107. Mary C. King, Professor of Economics Emerita, Portland State University
  108. Charalampos Konstantinidis, Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts Boston
  109. Kazim Konyar, Professor of Economics, California State University, San Bernardino
  110. Douglas Koritz, Professor of Economics, St Francis College
  111. Brent Kramer, Adjunct Assistant Professor, City University of New York
  112. Patrick L Mason, Professor of Economics, Florida State University, and Director, African American Studies Program
  113. David Laibman, Professor Emeritus, Economics, City University of New York, and Editor, Science & Society
  114. Thomas Lambert, Lecturer, University of Louisville
  115. Anthony Laramie, Professor of Economics, Merrimack College
  116. Margaret Levenstein, Research Professor, Institute for Social Research and School of Information, University of Michigan
  117. An Li, Assistant Professor, Sarah Lawrence College
  118. Victor D. Lippit, Professor Emeritus of Economics, University of California, Riverside
  119. James Luke, Professor of Economics, Lansing Community College
  120. Daniel MacDonald, Assistant Professor, California State University San Bernardino
  121. Arthur MacEwan, Professor Emeritus of Economics, University of Massachusetts Boston
  122. Allan MacNeill, Professor, Webster University
  123. Zagros Madjd-Sadjadi, Full Professor of Economics, Winston-Salem State University, and Former Chief Economist, City and County of San Francisco
  124. Yahya M. Madra, Associate Professor of Economics, Drew University
  125. Theresa Mannah-Blankson, Assistant Professor of Economics, Messiah College
  126. Thomas Masterson, Director of Applied Micromodeling, Levy Economics Institute of Bard College
  127. Gabriel Mathy, Assistant Professor, American University
  128. Peter H Matthews, Dana Professor of Economics, Middlebury College
  129. Scott McConnell, Associate Professor of Economics, Eastern Oregon University, and Owner/CEO, Side A Brewing
  130. Elaine McCrate, Economics Professor Emerita, University of Vermont
  131. Terrence McDonough, Professor Emeritus, National University Ireland Galway
  132. Martin Melkonian, Adjunct Associate Professor, Economics, Hofstra University
  133. Peter B. Meyer, Professor Emeritus of Urban Policy and Economics, University of Louisville
  134. Thomas Michl, Professor of Economics, Colgate University
  135. John Miller, Professor of Economics, Wheaton College
  136. Katherine A. Moos, Assistant Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  137. Monique Morrissey, Economist, Economic Policy Institute
  138. Tracy Mott, Professor, University of Denver
  139. Michele Naples, Professor of Economics, The College of New Jersey
  140. Daniel H. Neilson, Faculty in Economics, Bard College at Simon’s Rock
  141. Edward J. Nell, Emeritus Professor, New School for Social Research
  142. Julie A. Nelson, Professor, University of Massachusetts Boston
  143. Reynold F. Nesiba, Professor of Economics, Augustana University
  144. John Casey Nicolarsen, Visiting Professor, Sarah Lawrence College
  145. Eric Nilsson, Professor, California State University San Bernardino
  146. Erik Olsen, Associate Professor, University of Missouri Kansas City
  147. Paulette Olson, Professor Emerita, Wright State University
  148. Lenore Palladino, Senior Economist, Roosevelt Institute
  149. Christian Parenti, Associate Professor Department of Economics, John Jay College CUNY
  150. Mark Paul, Assistant Professor of Economics, New College of Florida
  151. Eva Paus, Professor of Economics, Mount Holyoke College
  152. Karen A Pfeifer, Professor Emerita of Economics, Smith College
  153. Lynda Pickbourn, Assistant Professor of Economics, Hampshire College
  154. Bruce Pietrykowski, Professor of Economics, University of Michigan-Dearborn
  155. Chiara Piovani, Associate Professor, University of Denver
  156. Robert Pollin, Distinguished Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Co-Director, Political Economy Research Institute (PERI)
  157. Devin T. Rafferty, Assistant Professor, Saint Peter’s University, and Founding Director, MS Finance Program
  158. Pratistha Joshi Rajkarnikar, Postdoc Scholar, Global Development and Environment Institute, Tufts University
  159. Michael Robinson, Professor of Economics, Mount Holyoke College
  160. John Roche, Associate Proferssor Emeritus, St John Fisher College
  161. Leonard Rodberg, Emeritus Professor of Urban Studies, Queens College/CUNY
  162. Leanne Roncolato, Assistant Professor of Economics, Franklin and Marshall College
  163. Frank Roosevelt, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Sarah Lawrence College
  164. Jaime Ros, Emeritus Professor, University of Notre Dame, and Professor of Economics, National Autonomous University of Mexico
  165. Nancy E Rose, Professor Emeritus, California State University San Bernardino
  166. Trevor R. Roycroft, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, Ohio University
  167. David F. Ruccio, Professor of Economics, University of Notre Dame
  168. Jeffrey D. Sachs, Professor, Columbia University
  169. Gregory M Saltzman, Professor of Economics and Management, Albion College
  170. John Sarich, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art
  171. John Schmitt, Vice President, Economic Policy Institute
  172. Jeremy Schwartz, Associate Professor, Loyola University Maryland
  173. Elliott Sclar, Emeritus Professor, Columbia University
  174. Stephanie Seguino, Professor of Economics, University of Vermont
  175. Mark Setterfield, Professor of Economics, New School for Social Research
  176. Anwar Shaikh, Professor, New School for Social Research
  177. Barry G. Shelley, Senior Lecturer, Pardee School of Global Studies, Boston University
  178. Zoe Sherman, Assistant Professor of Economics, Merrimack College
  179. Heidi Shierholz, Senior Economist and Director of Policy, Economic Policy Institute
  180. Hee-Young Shin, Assistant Professor, Wright State University
  181. Nicholas Shunda, Associate Professor of Economics, University of Redlands
  182. Kellin Stanfield, Assistant Professor of Economics, Hobart and William Smith Colleges
  183. Howard Stein, Professor, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  184. Jose A. Tapia, Associate Professor, Drexel University
  185. Linwood Tauheed, Associate Professor, University of Missouri Kansas City
  186. Daniele Tavani, Associate Professor, Colorado State University
  187. Pavlina R. Tcherneva, Program Director and Associate Professor of Economics, Bard College, and Research Associate, Levy Economics Institute
  188. Chris Tilly, Professor of Urban Planning, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs
  189. E. Ahmet Tonak, Visiting Professor, Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  190. Mariano Torras, Professor, Adelphi University
  191. Andres Torres, Distinguished Lecturer, Lehman College (retired)
  192. Mayo Toruno, Professor Emeritus, California State University San Bernardino
  193. Eric Tymoigne, Associate Professor of Economics, Lewis & Clark College
  194. Vamsi Vakulabharanam, Associate Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  195. William Van Lear, Economics Professor, Belmont Abbey College
  196. Ramaa Vasudevan, Associate Professor, Colorado State University
  197. Tanadej Vechsuruck, Assistant Professor, University of Rhode Island
  198. William Waller, Professor of Economics, Hobart and William Smith Colleges
  199. John P. Watkins, Professor of Economics, Westminster College, and Adjunct Professor of Economics, University of Utah
  200. David F. Weiman, Professor of Economics, Barnard College, Columbia University
  201. Scott A. Weir, Ph.D. in Economics, Retired
  202. Jeannette Wicks-Lim, Associate Research Professor, Political Economy Research Institute
  203. Noé Wiener, Lecturer, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  204. Robert B. Williams, Professor of Economics, Guilford College
  205. John Willoughby, Professor, Department of Economics, American University
  206. Benjamin Wilson, Assistant Professor, SUNY Cortland
  207. Lucas Wilson, Professor, Mount Holyoke College
  208. Valerie Wilson, Director, Program on Race, Ethnicity & the Economy, Economic Policy Institute
  209. Andrew J Winnick, Professor Emeritus, California State University Los Angeles
  210. Jon D. Wisman, Professor of Economics, American University
  211. Richard D. Wolff, Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts Amherst
  212. L. Randall Wray, Professor of Economics and Senior Scholar, Bard College and Levy Economics Institute
  213. Brenda Wyss, Associate Professor, Wheaton College Massachusetts
  214. Yavuz Yasar, Associate Professor, University of Denver
  215. Tai Young-Taft, Assistant Professor of Economics, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, and Research Scholar, Levy Economics Institute of Bard College
  216. June Zaccone, Associate Professor of Economics, Emerita, Hofstra University
  217. Ajit Zacharias, Senior Scholar, Levy Economics Institute
  218. German A. Zarate-Hoyos, Associate Professor, SUNY Cortland
  219. Gabriel Zucman, Assistant Professor of Economics, University of California, Berkeley