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Letter to the Editor: An issue that can unite rural, urban voters

To the editor:

I think if there is one issue that can unite rural and urban voters, it's

that our healthcare costs are too high. Compared to most other countries in

the world, like Canada and France, we spend twice as much per person on

healthcare while our healthcare results are actually lower. Another fact is

that our healthcare system leaves people behind; in Minnesota there are

currently 350,000 people with no health insurance and about 400,000 who are

underinsured, meaning they avoid seeking healthcare because of the high cost

of deductibles and copays. When we are paying the most out of any other

country while over 10 percent are being left behind, it's clear we have a broken


The solution, I believe, is a single payer healthcare system. Single payer

healthcare means that clinics and hospitals will remain private enterprises,

but the payment for healthcare services would only come from state

government. If you think that government is too wasteful, consider that the

administrative costs of Medicare is about 2 percent of all costs, while in our

current healthcare system administrative costs are about 20 percent. An enormous

amount of money would be saved.

In addition, no one would be left behind in a single payer system. All

Minnesota residents would get a healthcare card and would be able to visit

the doctor. It's time for us in Minnesota to stop leaving people behind and

this would be a big step.

Finally, there is currently a single payer healthcare bill in the Minnesota

House and Senate called the Minnesota Health Plan. For Alexandria

readers, I encourage you to read it, and contact your legislatures to ask them

to support it.

Alex Orlowski

Minneapolis, MN