NU Online News Service, April 4, 2003, 10:45 a.m. EST – The Health Insurance Association of America, Washington, says lawmakers in at least 15 U.S. states are considering bills that would create “universal,” government-run health insurance programs.

“With the states’ budget problems and popular opposition to such a drastic overhaul, it’s unlikely that any proposal will receive serious consideration,” HIAA analysts write in a state issue tracking report.

Oregon voters defeated a universal health insurance referendum in the November 2002 elections, the HIAA analysts write.

But the analysts cite the universal health bills as a symptom of the increase in the cost of health insurance and the increase in the number of uninsured Americans.