Category Archives: Work Group

Universal Health Care Work Group: Pushing for Meaningful Recommendations to the Legislature

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Once again, the HCHR-WA Universal Health Care Work Group Planning Subcommittee thanks the more than 50 people who signed up to give public comments at the final Work Group meeting December 9th. Every speaker urged the Work Group to recommend Model A which set the tone of the meeting as we pushed to get Work Group members recommendations on record.

Success!  Work Group members were given the opportunity to rank the three models.  21 of the official roster of 37 Work Group members indicated a preference. (Not “voting” were 6 abstentions and state-agency personnel.)  Of the 21 indicating a preference, 16 (76%) recommended Model A, a publicly-funded and administered universal system covering all Washingtonians. Only 3 (14%) chose Model C (Fill the Gaps/Cascade Care). 2 (10%) did not name a choice. We’re continuing to make sure the final report reflects this majority in favor of Model A.

Work Group members have received a candidate for a Final Report to the Legislature with consolidated Work Group member comments from previous drafts. We would like to see the model-ranking summarized in the Executive Summary and address some statements about feasibility and affordability.

For a summary of the final Dec 9 meeting, check out our founding Sponsor member Health Care for All Washington’s post Universal Health Care Work Group Final Meeting: Where There’s a Will, There’s a Model A.

Watch the full meeting

Listen to breakout session 1

Watch breakout session 2

Watch breakout session 3


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Final Universal Health Care Work Group Meeting

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Sign up in Support of Model A 

The more people that sign up, the more we show our strength. The public comments are usually at the top of the agenda and speakers are usually allowed 1.5 minutes. We are asking people 1) Speak in favor of Model A: Universal healthcare covering all residents with the benefits package and delivery system rules set by the state and the state contracting directly with providers; and  2) Ask each Work Group members to state the Model they prefer for the record to fulfill the mandate of the legislature to make recommendations.

Register for the meeting and to provide public comments by Monday, Dec. 7 at 5 pm.  At this point, it is likely there are more speakers than time allows. Written comments can be submitted after the meeting. Sign up anyway — we want standing room only on Zoom!


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Support Universal Health Care in WA? Deadline for Public Comment Nov. 11

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We’re sharing this Action Alert from Health Care for All – Washington, one of HCHR-WA’s sponsoring organizations. Read on for an excellent summary and call to action for the Universal Health Care Work Group:

At meeting #8, the last meeting before the Work Group sees the draft report from the actuaries, the struggle between what is needed and how to get there was painfully apparent. Some threw up their hands saying it can’t be done, others had a non-universal preferred pathway even while noting that Medicare is the only truly transparent system that keeps costs lower. Representatives from the health insurance and small business communities seemed genuinely bewildered at the idea of a health care delivery system other than the current one.

Once again, public comments opened the meeting, from 12 of the 42 who had signed up. To a person, they strongly supported Option A: Universal healthcare covering all residents with the benefits package and delivery system rules set by the state and the state contracting directly with providers.

A few highlights:

  • Hearing coverage is an essential health benefit. The speaker noted that she has spent $50,000 on 16 different hearing aids during her lifetime, and that 1,000,000 Washingtonians suffer hearing loss (1 in 3 by age 65)
  • Unions now solidly support universal health care, and 100,000 Washingtonians have been laid off due to COVID-19, losing employer-sponsored health insurance along with their jobs, according to HCFA-WA member David Loud
  • The Work Group needs to remember why they are here: to study and make recommendations to the legislature on how to create, implement, maintain, and fund a universal health care system that may include publicly funded, publicly administered, and publicly and privately delivered health care that is sustainable and affordable to all Washington residents.

Now it’s your turn. Let the Work Group members know why you also support Option A.

Provide public comment in this survey, by Wednesday, November 11 

Watch the full meeting

Watch a breakout session

We can’t get to universal health care without you!

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