Act to Ensure Effective Health Care Cost Control

The Act to Ensure Effective Health Care Cost Control (HD 1677, SD 875) would require the state every year to compare our total health care spending with our projected health care spending if the Commonwealth implemented a single payer health care system; if after several years the “Single Payer Benchmark” outperformed our actual health care spending, the state would be responsible for developing a single payer implementation plan and submitting it to the Legislature.

You can download the cost control bill as a PDF file here.

AN ACT TO ENSURE EFFECTIVE HEALTH CARE COST CONTROL

Section 1 of Chapter 12C of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after the definition of “Self-insured group” the following definitions:-
“Single payer benchmark”, the estimated total costs of providing health care to all residents of Massachusetts under a single payer health care system in the previous year, as established in section 23.
“Single payer health care”, a system providing publicly financed, universal access to health care for the population through a unified public health care plan, simplifying administration and allowing the budgeting of health care spending.

Chapter 12C of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after section 22 the following:-
Section 23. (a) The center shall monitor, review, and evaluate reports related to single payer health care; provided, however, that the center shall also monitor the performance of single payer health care systems in other states and countries. (b) The center shall establish a single payer benchmark that shall be an estimate of the total cost of providing health care to all residents of Massachusetts under a single payer health care system during the previous year, provided that the single payer health care system offers continuous, comprehensive, affordable coverage for all Massachusetts residents regardless of income, assets, health status, or availability of other health coverage. (c) The center shall include in its annual report, as mandated by section 16 (a), a comparison of the single payer benchmark with the actual health care spending in the state for the previous year, indicating whether the state would have saved money while expanding access to care under a single payer health care system.

Chapter 6D of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after section 18 the following:-
Section 19. If at the outset of fiscal year 2016 the board determines that the single payer benchmark, as calculated by the Center for Health Information and Analysis under Section 23 of Chapter 12C, has outperformed the actual total health care spending and spending growth in the state, the commission shall, no later than June 30, 2017, submit a “Single Payer Health Care Implementation Plan” to the Legislature for consideration. The Implementation Plan will be developed after holding public hearings and meetings across the state, and will consist of legislation to implement a single payer health care system for Massachusetts, as defined in Section 1 of Chapter 12C, and that offers continuous, comprehensive, affordable coverage for all Massachusetts residents regardless of income, assets, health status, or availability of other health coverage.