LOCAL NEWS

New bill looks to clear path for state universal health care

Feb 14, 2019, 1:33 PM
Health care...
(Images Money, Flickr)

Washington state’s road to universal health care continues, following the introduction of a bill in the state Legislature that would establish a fact-finding group.

RELATED: New universal healthcare proposal for Washington state

If passed, SB-5822 would establish a “work group,” comprised of “a broad range of stakeholders with expertise in the health care financing and delivery system.”

That would include businesses with experience in group insurance models, health care providers and facilities, state agencies, and consumers.

The group would be tasked to “study and make recommendations to the Legislature on a universal health care system, that includes publicly funded, privately delivered health care that is sustainable and affordable to all Washington residents.”

The bill cites data claiming that as of 2017, 400,000 Washington residents remained uninsured due to growing health care costs.

“Health care is a human right and it is in the public interest that all residents have access to health care, that improves health outcomes, contains health care costs for the state and its residents, and reduces health disparities,” it reads.

The group would be required to present its findings and recommendations to the Legislature by Nov. 15, 2020. The bill is scheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Health and Long Term Care on Feb. 18, at 8 a.m.

The push for universal health care continues

This comes not long after a bill introduced by State Senator Bob Hasegawa in early-February, that would create something called the Whole Washington Health Trust.

It would be run by a nine-member board of trustees appointed by the governor. According to Hasegawa, the bill requires that the trust provide “minimum essential coverage under the Affordable Care Act.” Residents with incomes under 200 percent of the federal poverty level would not be subject to any premiums, which would not be more than $200 a month.

Hasegawa is also listed as one of the co-sponsors on this latest health care bill.

Gov. Jay Inslee also introduced his own version of a universal health care plan in January, called Cascade Care. According to the governor, a proposed Cascade Care bill would direct the state’s health care authority to provide coverage across Washington, by contracting with one or more health care carriers.

RELATED: How Inslee plans to pay for Cascade Care

That coverage would be available to anyone in the individual market. It would also set reimbursement rates consistent with Medicare. The service would be voluntary, and patients would spend no more than 10 percent of their annual income on premiums.

Sen. Hasegawa has previously expressed that he doesn’t believe Inslee’s proposal goes far enough, claiming it’s more an incremental step toward universal health care than a full-on solution.

Local News

Teen home run ball...
Jake Chapman, KIRO 7 News

Teen from Puyallup catches home run ball that ended M’s 21-year playoff drought

17-year-old Marchany Roman, of Puyallup, caught the drought-ending home run hit by Cal Raleigh after the M's defeated Oakland Friday night.
1 day ago
smiley woke...
L.B. Gilbert

Tiffany Smiley criticizes Seattle Times over cease and desist letter

After being issued a cease and desist order, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tiffany Smiley is now criticizing The Seattle Times.
1 day ago
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 30: Julio Rodriguez #44 of the Seattle Mariners celebrates with fan...
Nicole Jennings

Mariners will not be hosting playoff games this weekend

The Mariners will be playing in the first round of the MLB playoff games this weekend. So how likely is it that those games will take place in Seattle?
1 day ago
Aberdeen High School...
Sam Campbell

Boy accused of using Aberdeen HS TikTok to post shooting threats

Classes are set to resume in Aberdeen after they were canceled because of threats posted to one of the high school’s social media accounts.
1 day ago
Suspect in REI bike theft - Police said the suspect admitted to stealing the bike, and he was arres...
KIRO 7 News Staff

Man suspected of stealing bike from REI worth $2,400 arrested in Bellevue

A man suspected of stealing a bike worth $2,400 was arrested by Bellevue police on Tuesday.
1 day ago
Flood Insurance...
Ted Buehner

Rainy season is in a month, are you ready with flood insurance?

After an all-time record dry summer, it may be hard to believe that the Washington flood season is just around the corner.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
...

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!
...

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
New bill looks to clear path for state universal health care