Syracuse-area doctors, clergy support health care for all (Your letters)

March 21, 2017

http://www.syracuse.com/opinion/index.ssf/2017/03/syracuse-area_doctors_clergy_support_health_care_for_all_your_letters.html#incart_river_home

To the Editor:

As a group of local physicians and clergy who advocate for universal health care, the article, “Congress’ analyst: Millions to lose coverage under GOP bill” (March 13, 2017) moves our country in the wrong direction.

We work and serve many who have benefited from expanded health coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Drastic cuts are not the answer to the high deductibles of the ACA — we need continued improvements and expansion to make health care guaranteed for all.

We ask Rep. John Katko to vote against the Republican health care plan.

There is a model for an affordable, comprehensive health care program for all in New York state: the New York Health Act. It’s like Medicare for all, though with no premiums, deductibles or co-pays. All those who live in the state are covered, and it is funded by progressive taxes on income and high-end investments. Under the plan, 98 percent of New Yorkers would pay less than they currently do for more comprehensive coverage.

Medicare is beloved by many who have it. If we give all New Yorkers Medicare, as well as negotiate fair drug and medical device prices and get rid of insurance company administrative costs and profit, we are estimated to save $45 billion per year.

We need state Sens. David Valesky, John DeFrancisco and Patty Ritchie to sponsor the New York Health Act. Please get involved and let them know health care is a human right.

Sunny P. Aslam, MD
Irene N. Sills, MD 
Gita Ramamurthy, MD
Marianna Kaufman, MD
Jess Aslam, MD
William Paolo, MD
Richard Weiskopf, MD
Darvin Varon, MD
John A. Friedman, MD
John Manring, MD
Wanda Fremont, MD
David Keith, MD
Tom Maltese, MD
Andrew Kaufman, MD
Lynda Kreitzer, MD
Mark Cattalani, MD
Terri Hargrave, MD
Joel Potash, MD
Alan Freshman, MD
David Lehmann, MD
Intikhab Ahmad, MD
Brian Johnson, MD

Mohamed Khater, President, Islamic Society of Syracuse
Rev. Fred Daley, All Saint’s Church, Syracuse
Rev. Quinn Caldwell, Plymouth Congregational Church, Syracuse
Bishop Thomas Costello, Syracuse
Rev. Dr. Olivia Hilton, Episcopal priest
Rev. Neal Quartier, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Syracuse
Rev. Johanna Marcure, Rector, Grace Episcopal Church, Syracuse
Rabbi Andrew Pepperstone, Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas, Jamesville
Rev. Jennifer Hamlin-Navias, First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse
Bethany Russell-Lowe, MDiv., Candidate for Unitarian Universalist Ministry, May Memorial & First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse

Rev. James Mathews, St. Lucy’s Church, Syracuse

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