Message from Peter Mahr, MD Health Care for All Oregon

December 22, 2015


As many of you know I am on the Board of Directors for Health Care for All Oregon (HCAO).  Our goal is to enact a health care program in Oregon that would be universal, life long, and publicly funded. It would allow anyone to go to any medical provider or hospital and receive care with no co-pays or deductibles. Affordable premiums would be pre-paid by both businesses and individuals and the collected money would pay for all medically necessary services.

These universal systems are in place in every other industrialized nation and they all provide better care to more (all) people for much less money.  As a physician I witnesses the corrosive effects of our current system on my patients’ health and sanity on a daily basis, so this is a very personal struggle.  

Many people who have not experienced universal systems in other countries think we have to put up with our health care system the way it is. But they are wrong.  The Affordable care Act (ACA) allows individual states to adopt health care systems that meet or exceed the coverage and cost of the ACA after 2017.

In Oregon we are planning to do just that.  Health Care for All Oregon is a growing grass roots organization which, through its member organizations, represents roughly 250,000 Oregonians.  HCAO  helped write legislation that will enact a universal, publicly-funded health care system in Oregon and, if not acted on by the legislature, will present such a system to the voters as a a ballot measure.

But HCAO is in need of your help.  We desperately need financial support to continue raising awareness, increasing our membership and hiring staff to keep our organization running and growing.  I have been asked, as a board member, to raise $5,000 before the end of December in order to do my part for HCAO and the fight for universal health care in Oregon.

I realize many of you are very generous with donations and are likely asked on a daily basis to contribute to multiple good causes.  I would be very thankful if you would consider donating money in support of HCAO. Please click on my HCAO fundraising page to sponsor me.


Peter Mahr, MD

#BlackLivesMatter: Physicians Must Stand for Racial Justice

December 7, 2015



Physicians for a National Health Program

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Conference Call December 3, 2015

December 6, 2015

Film: Speaking Out for Health Care for EVERYONE! now on YouTube

December 4, 2015

The documentary film “Speaking Out for Healthcare for EVERYONE” portrays peoples’ experiences with the health system utilizing a storytelling format. In addition, statistics, cartoons, photographs and video footage from a variety of sources are incorporated to enhance the message of a health care system that utilizes a single payer financial model and a private delivery system of care, which is inclusive of Everybody In, Nobody Out!  The film won two Pegasus awards.  If you have any questions about single payer health care – Medicare for All, please contact me at

Lovett: Health Committee pol raises eyebrows with investments in drug firms

December 2, 2015

New York Daily News

Monday, November 30, 2015, 2:30 AM
  • Sen. Kemp Hannon's investments and the campaign contributions he received from the medical community have raised eyebrows as the actions of state lawmakers are under legal scrutiny.

Sen. Kemp Hannon’s investments and the campaign contributions he received from the medical community have raised eyebrows as the actions of state lawmakers are under legal scrutiny.

ALBANY — The head of the powerful Senate Health Committee has up to $130,000 in investments in pharmaceutical and other health-related companies, state records show.

Sen. Kemp Hannon (R-Nassau County) in 2014 invested in 14 companies that would fall under his committee’s purview.

By comparison, Assembly Health Committee Chairman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan) did not report owning any stock in health-related companies. In addition to his investments, Hannon over the past four years also received more than $420,000 from pharmaceutical and other medical interests, records show.

Hannon’s office had no comment. On the part of his 2014 state financial disclosure form dealing with investments, he wrote that sales and purchases were “at sole discretion of the broker.”

While seemingly legal, the senator’s investments and the campaign contributions he received from the medical community have raised eyebrows at a time when how Albany does business is under legal scrutiny.


Two former top legislative leaders, Assemblyman Sheldon Silver and Sen. Dean Skelos, are facing prison after being charged separately with using their offices for personal gain.

“Given the attention placed on the self-dealing that exists in Albany with these trials, it would be best if Sen. Hannon would divest from these companies,” said Dick Dadey, executive director of Citizens Union, a reform group.

Dadey argued that lawmakers should operate without even an appearance of impropriety.

“These investments show that he has a personal stake in how the state handles health care policy,” he said. “He’s an important player that should not be seen as benefiting personally from the decisions he’s a part of.”

NYC PAPERS OUT. Social media use restricted to low res file max 184 x 128 pixels and 72 dpiJEFFERSON SIEGEL/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Dean Skelos (left), the former leader of the New York State Senate, and his son, Adam (right) arrive at Manhattan Federal Court on Nov. 17. Skelos is on trial on federal corruption charges.

The Daily News reported in March that Hannon had secured $65,000 in state grant money for a Long Island hospital with strong ties to his private law firm.


Hours after he personally called different newspaper publishers to tell them he was signing a bill they wanted, Gov. Cuomo vetoed the measure.

Cuomo, sources said, had called several publishers, including those in Buffalo and Albany, to say he would support a bill that would have saved them big money by exempting some newspaper carriers from different state minimum wage, unemployment insurance and workers’ compensation requirements.


But not long after, he issued a veto message saying that the bill would be contrary to his administration’s goal of ensuring “a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work, with all of the appropriate protections available under the law.”

“What changed?” asked one source. “Doesn’t he know he’s putting another nail, or two, in the coffin of the print newspaper business?”

The teamsters union applauded the move.

Cuomo’s office said it doesn’t “comment on private conversations.”

Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver also faces prison on charges of federal corruption.SETH WENIG/AP

Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver also faces prison on charges of federal corruption.


The recent surprise retirement of the state teachers union’s top lobbyist came amid pressure from Michael Mulgrew, head of the city teachers union, sources said.

Mulgrew, whose members make up a major portion of the state union, is said to have grown disenchanted with Steve Allinger during the legislative session.

Mulgrew didn’t deny he played a role in Allinger’s departure.

“We have to get work done, move fast, and everyone has to be on the same page,” he said.

Union insiders say the Allinger situation is part of a larger schism that has left state teachers union President Karen Magee isolated from the rest of her union leadership halfway through her first term.

Sources said Mulgrew is also unhappy with Magee, though he denied it.

The two unions, Mulgrew said, “are moving together in a much more coordinated effort than we were before. All (Magee’s) positions have been good. She’s taking the right path on things.”