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A Model for Comprehensive Reform - Healthy Wisconsin

State Public Health Insurance Plans are Models for National Health Reform

While the current debate in DC has focused on the choice of public health insurance plan, this Dispatch will outline how state legislators and health care advocates have already been advancing the priority of a public plan - helping to build grassroots support for creating the choice of a public health insurance plan as part of comprehensive health care reform.  Notable state campaigns to extend public plans to more families include Healthy Wisconsin, a guaranteed health care program for all state residents, providing state employee-level benefits and ensuring consumers' choice of providers, which passed the State Senate in 2007, and the Connecticut Healthcare Partnership, allowing small businesses and municipalities to buy coverage through the state employee health plan, which passed the legislature in 2008 but was vetoed by the Governor. This year, these initiatives have been reinvigorated by legislators and joined by other proposals that hinge on creating a public plan, like SustiNet, a comprehensive reform measure which creates a true public health insurance option in Connecticut, the nation's insurance capitol. 

Health Care for All: Policy Options for 2009

Download a copy of the report in PDF format here.  View the HTML version of the report here.

OVERVIEW

In June 2007, the Wisconsin State Senate became the first (and only) legislative chamber in the country to pass a fully-funded comprehensive health care reform package that would guarantee health care for all residents and enhance their choice of provider.  Healthy Wisconsin stands out for its guarantee of affordable health care, cost containment provisions, and consumer choice.  While not the sole model worth emulating, states should consider the elements of the plan that deliver on key values of cost, quality, and access.

Washington State Plans for the Future of Health Care Reform

With a very active session wrapping up, the Washington State Legislature has laid the way for future health care reform. Late Monday evening, legislators passed SB 6333, the Citizens' Work Group on Health Care Reform. The legislation, which awaits the Governor's signature, authorizes a detailed analysis of leading comprehensive health care reform models and requires the Work Group to engage the public in developing recommendations for comprehensive reform.