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).


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.