Legislation creating a universal healthcare system that would be based on the existing Medicare program as well as employer-based coverage has been introduced by Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., chairman of the Health Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee.
H.R. 1841, the “AmeriCare Health Care Act,” would provide universal health care for all U.S. residents, with special eligibility for children under the age of 24, pregnant women, and individuals with limited incomes, that is, those who earn less than 300% of the federal poverty limit.
It also sets out standards for supplemental plans with a focus on consumer protection.
One provision would require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to negotiate discounts for prescription drugs.
“After more than a decade on the back burner, America’s 45 million uninsured are finally receiving the attention they deserve,” Stark said in introducing the bill before Congress went on recess March 30.