An Introduction to Bernie’s Medicare-for-all Bill, a Summary, and a Link to the Full Bill

We present the full text and a summary of Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for all bill (“A BILL To establish a Medicare-for-all national health insurance program”).

Read the full text of Sanders’ Medicare for All Act of 2017 (S. 1804).

Background:

On September 13, 2017 the bill was introduced into the Senate with 16 cosponsors. This bill would transition the US to a Universal Healthcare System over 4 years if enacted. The bill is meant to be read alongside a fiscal study of potential revenue sources (as funding mechanisms are not contained in the bill itself)

In other words, Bernie released two key documents that go hand-in-hand:

  1. His Medicare-for-all bill which expands Medicare coverage to all citizens to create a universal single payer healthcare system.
  2. An extensive fiscal study with many potential revenue sources identified. These include higher taxes on high incomes, an estate tax increase, a capital gains tax increase. In return, there is a projected of $4,400 for the typical middle class family.

You can get a basic overview of the Medicare-for-all bill here, you can learn about funding here.

A Summary of the Medicare-for-all Act

Below are the key provisions in the Sanders’ Medicare for All Act of 2017 (S. 1804):

  • As the title of the bill indicates, the bill is intended to expand Medicare eligibility to all US citizens over 4 years. The bill would also expand existing Medicare coverage while nearly eliminating all out-of-pocket costs.
  • The bill would expand Medicare benefits to create a new set of “Covered Health Benefits” (a more robust version of the ACA’s minimal essential benefits) which can only be limited by a providers clinical judgement.
  • This bill would protect a States right to expand eligibility further so long as they use their own state resources to fund it.
  • This bill incrementally lowers Medicare eligibility requirements over 4 years. Those eligible would be able to buy into any current Medicare program (Part A, B, C, D) during the transition.
  • After the four year transition the full program would be implemented to universal automatic entitlement with full benefits and protections funded through the Universal Medicare Trust.
  • Funding mechanisms aren’t contained in the bill, they are contained in a separate document. The idea was to present a healthcare bill, alongside different funding options, to give legislators more options for debating and creating the proper funding mechanisms.

Full Text of Bernie’s Medicare-for-all Bill

Read the full text of Sanders’ Medicare for All Act of 2017 (S. 1804).

We will add a web based version as one becomes available. For now, see the link above for the full bill.