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See Rekindling Reforms' Position
on the Need for a Public Option in Health Care Reform

View full article here

6/13/09 - A NOTE ON OUR REVISED WORKING PAPER ON THE PUBLIC PLAN OPTION FOUND ABOVE... In consultation with others, we have been identifying the elements of a plan to be offered as a public health insurance alternative along side commercial health insurance. We are circulating this working paper, with a view to influencing the debate on a public plan option. We encourage you to circulate it, help us refine it, and add your ideas. You can reach us by email at: email@ Please check this website weekly for the updates.

State Health Care Reform

Connecticut moves closer to enacting a single payer plan

Universal Health Care Bill Advances in Albany
Read the press release

New York State Health Issues First Study Contrasting Health Insurance Expansion Proposals
Click here to read the report.

A Rekindling Reform position statement (September 21, 2010)
Click here to

Groups Call on NYC's Congressional Delegation to Speak Up for Working Americans in the Debt-Ceiling / Budget Debate

Why Rekindling Reform Will Join the 2011 May Day Rally

Rekindling Reform asked to be listed on the announcement of MAY DAY 2011 as one of the dozens of sponsors - largly unions. Why?

As an organization whose genesis was (and whose letterhead says), "Working to Achieve Quality Health Care for All," why should we become engaged with "Labor Rights, Immigrant Rights, Jobs for All"?

A brief answer is, for the same reason that Rekindling Reformıs latest public statement is about "Social Security: Why We Need It, Why It Is Under Attack, and How to Guarantee Its Future." For us, as advocates for extending social insurance to health care coverage, defending social security is a no brainer.

Consider also that Rekindling Reform has many labor unions among its sponsors.

A more specific explanation is found in the recent call by our ally/sponsor, the Metro New York Health Care for All Campaign, to its members and supporters to attend an April 9 mass rally in Times Square: "We urge everyone to attend, to stand up for the labor and social rights for ALL of us!"

In short, Rekindling Reform recognizes that a multi front war is under way over our nation's values and priorities. It has been an unequal struggle. While Health Care for All remains our primary issue, building alliances across issues is critical.

So, the timelier question may be how rather than why. One partial answer may come if we ask,
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them?
...and if we respond by showing up. We hope you will be there Sunday, May 1 and will bring friends. We will be distributing fliers about the issues that Rekindling Reform is working on. Why not join us in this?

Now Under Construction in Congress:
An Important New Beginning in Health Reform

An Analysis and Action Guide (December 13, 2009)

In the next six to eight weeks, Congress will likely pass a massive health reform bill. Much remains uncertain about that bill's provisions. And, we can be certain, much that we once hoped for will be absent. But the bill will be historic, and we must ensure that the most desirable provisions in the texts being considered now remain in the final bill. For the first time ever, the federal government will tell the people that universal coverage is a public good that can be realized only with a tax funded health insurance program. Also, for the first time ever, the federal government will start regulating the health insurance industry, to put an end to its most brutal practices and to make it more accountable. Please click here to see the rest of the analysis and how you can help.

Why We Need a Public Plan Option in Health Care Reform

View full article here

A New Position Statement (October 10, 2009)

Several stages of hard work remain before Congress arrives at a single unified bill for its consideration. The House is already working to merge the drafts of its three committees and produce a bill of its own, and the Senate will shortly be doing likewise with its two committee products.

Rekindling Reform considers the draft developed by the Senate Finance Committee to be on the wrong track in several key respects.

The House leadership is working to resolve differences among its three somewhat acceptable but still far from adequate drafts. The two bills that Senate and House leaders present for consideration in their respective chambers will be subject to floor debate and amendment, offering opportunities for further revisions, for better or worse. (See the full statement here.)

Health Care Reform--Spring and Summer 2009

Updates on the struggle for a public plan option
• Robert Borosage on the politics
• Jacob Hacker's new paper compares the bills

The Center for Policy Analysis has produced a very useful guide.

Why Single Payer Advocacy Matters Now More than Ever

Joseph White - Cost Control and Health Care Reform: The Case for All-Payer Regulation

Improving Public Health: Center for Policy Analysis Shows the Links to Affordable Health Reform

Report Projects Up to 66 Million Americans Could be Uninsured by 2019 Unless Health Reform is Enacted.

UE's General Executive Board Weighs in on Washington Healthcare Proposals

Study Finds Insurance Coverage for All Could Reduce Health Disparities

A First 100 Days Health Agenda

We ask Congress and the President to act in the First 100 Days of the new administration to expand health care and improve the public's health:

    Extend and expand health coverage and access
    Halt erosion of traditional, public Medicare
    Improve access to affordable medicines
    Increase enrollment and access to Medicaid

Read the Introduction
Read the Full First 100 Days Health Agenda.
View full program here

A Health Care Assessment of the First Hundred Days of the New Administration and Congress

Friday, May 1, 2009 - 8:30am to 1:00pm
Joseph Murphy Institute, City University of New York
25 West 43rd Street, 18th floor , in Manhattan
Sponsored in conjunction with the Queens College Dept. of Urban Studies


8:30amCoffee and Registration
9:00amWelcome and Introductions - Frank Goldsmith, Rekindling Reform
9:15am Roundtable Discussions (concurrent) - led by:
Justin Cunningham, New York Statewide Senior Action Council Patricia Nemore, Center for Medicare Advocacy Sid Socolar, Rekindling Reform
State-Federal Relations:
Mark Hannay, Metro New York Health Care for All Campaign Kinda Serafi, Children's Defense Fund of New York Adam Thompson, Progressive States Network
Universal/national health care:
Karen Ballard, New York State Nurses Association Len Rodberg, Queens College Urban Studies Program
10:45am Break
11:00am Plenary Session: Roundtable reports
11:15am "100 Days and Beyond"
Ted Marmor, Yale University
Ellen Shaffer, Center for Policy Analysis
12:45pm     Closing remarks - Lou Levitt, Rekindling Reform

Policy Brief on the 2008 Election and Universal Health Care

May 27, 2008 A new policy brief reviews the major US presidential contenders' positions on health care reform, testing them against a set of six benchmarks for accessible, affordable health care for all. The review finds that none of the proposals addresses the basic obstacles to attaining affordable health care for all. Yet, it points out, while Senators Obama and Clinton support the idea that all citizens are entitled to affordable health care, Senator McCain rejects it, also proposing actions that would discourage employer health coverage. Noting that only the views the Democrats voice are consistent with the six benchmarks, the brief suggests that they can do better than the actual proposals they have made, and it urges them to do so.

Read the full Policy Brief here.

WINTER 2008: Thoughts on the Challenge Facing The New York State Partnership for Coverage

According to Sid Socolar, Chair of Rekindling Reform's National Programs Committee, the assignment facing the NYS Partnership for Coverage is formidable.

The Partnership has been charged with generating development of a plan that assures "access to affordable, high quality medical care for every single New Yorker, reduces the overwhelming and unsustainable cost of healthcare incurred by the public and the state, and avoids the significant implementation problems that have plagued other state efforts in this area."

Click here for Sid Socolar's full aricle.

Alliance to Restore Medicare

Rekindling Reform has helped to form a new national partnership to protect Medicare -- the Alliance to Restore Medicare (ARM). To date, ten leading national organizations concerned with Medicare have become part of this important effort. ARM is seeking major changes in provisions of the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 that are serving to privatize Medicare services and erode its fiscal integrity. Included in these provisions are the excess payments going to Medicare Advantage Plans and the prohibition on government bargaining with drug companies on the prices of prescription drugs.

ARM is inviting other organizations to indicate their support for this campaign. You can find out more at Please spread the word.

Rekindling Reform believes that the protection of Medicare is fundamental for advancement to universal health care. Being within the framework of government, Medicare can lead the way towards fundamental changes in the health care system that emphasize primary care, prevention of illness and disability, maintenance of wellness, and value for money. Medicare can be the test site for new forms of reimbursement for medical services that move away from payment for procedures towards a system emphasizing high quality accessible and coordinated primary care. We welcome the advent of ARM and will do everything we can to help it achieve its vital aims.

Medicare Reform Legislation, 2007

A bill passed August 1 by the House of Representatives is a giant step toward restoring Medicare as the dependable program that seniors and people with disabilities have counted on for four decades. The bill, if enacted, would undo the great majority of the corrosive provisions of the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA), legislation that was calculated to undermine Medicare's fiscal integrity and transform it from social insurance to private insurance.


Congress, Fix Medicare 'Reform' Flaws First

Newsday, July 24, 2007
In 2007, efforts to reform American medical care have taken two distinct paths. Presidential debates have concentrated on the plans candidates have proposed for moving toward universal health insurance coverage. By contrast, the new Democratic Congress has concentrated on problems arising from the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA). This has split the reform debate sharply.


Newsletter Archive

Fall 2008
January 2008
October 2007
July 2007

The 2005-2006 Health Action Program of Rekindling Reform

  • We are following the work of the Citizen's Health Care Working Group as it implements the two year nation wide consultative process mandated by section 1014 of the MedicareModernization Act of 2003. We will utilize opportunities for contributing testimony and promoting public discussion and debate on how best to make health care more affordable and move out country further towards quality affordable health care for all.

  • We will work towards the development of effective proposals to enable the State of New York toinitiative bulk purchasing of prescription of drugs for public and private programs as well as for persons without coverage.

  • We will seek to educate state and local candidates for public office on 2006 on the pressing issues of health reform and encourage them to commit themselves to supporting such reforms.

  • We are collaborating with the Hunger Action Network of New York State and the Long Island Coalition for a National Health Plan to help shape and promote Assembly Bill l(A.6575) to create a legislative commission to explore alternative pathways by which New York State could move towards health are for all. The effort to enact this bill is continuing. Over 250 groups are backing this legislation including Local 1199, the working Families Party and the UJS-federal of New York.

  • In 2004-2005, RR sponsored four seminars which studied state-based health care which were designed to generate strategies for such initiatives in New York state. Additional state-based health care seminars are planed for 2005 -2006.

  • We will continue to work with Jobs With Justice and support the Quinn Bill.

  • We will continue to examine the state health care initiatives and seek to learn from the promising work being done in Maine, California, Illinois ,Maryland, Vermont and elsewhere.

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