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General News    H2'ed 2/11/09

PA Healthcare: The Goose That Lays The Golden Egg?

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Harrisburg, PA - A group working for publicly-funded, privately-provided health care believes abandoning the employer-based health care system in Pennsylvania would be one of the solutions to the state's economic troubles.

Health Care for All Pennsylvania predicts the Family and Business Health Care Security Act - also known as the "single payer" solution - would cover all Pennsylvania residents, save $15 billion over the current "multi-payer" system, and create over 100,000 medical delivery jobs, according to executive director Chuck Pennacchio.

"This legislation would be the greatest jobs creation program since the late 19th century when the steel industry took off like a rocket in Pennsylvania."

The plan has gained wide appeal and a has good chance of passage this year, says Pennacchio.

"We've been able to pick up Republican support, which makes us the only legislative campaign for universal health care that has been able to attract Republican support."

The plan would be funded using existing state and federal funds, along with a three-percent personal income tax and 10-percent business payroll tax. Supporters include labor, business, the governor, the Allegheny County Council, and the city councils in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Erie. While supporters say most Pennsylvanians would save money under the plan, opponents say it would create another large taxpayer-funded bureaucracy.

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