Trump Administration Adopts Mini-Universal Health Care for COVID-19

Amy Katz/ZUMA

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What a brilliant idea!

The Trump administration will use a federal stimulus package to pay hospitals that treat uninsured people with the new coronavirus as long as they agree not to bill the patients or issue unexpected charges.

….A 1918-like pandemic would cause U.S. hospitals to absorb a net loss of $3.9 billion, or an average $784,592 per hospital, according to a 2007 report in the Journal of Health Care Finance that called on policy makers to consider contingencies to ensure hospitals don’t become insolvent as a result of a severe pandemic.

This means that the uninsured will have lower costs than anyone, including those on Medicare or private insurance. That’s very progressive, and apparently it will cost only about $4 billion out of the $100 billion earmarked for hospitals.

But this prompts a thought. This proposal is great because it sets a standard reimbursement rate for treating COVID-19 and it makes things easy on patients. They just have to show up at the hospital and not worry about anything else. After all, it’s not their fault they got sick. So what if—and hear me out on this—we just did that for every illness? For everyone. And not just at hospitals, but everywhere. We could call it, I don’t know, universal health care or something like that. Who’s with me?

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Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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