As more and more people are unable to afford health care in this country and state, it is becoming clear to me that the big insurance companies are looking out for their bottom line before the health of people. When 45 million people in the U.S. are uninsured, and more than one out of every five Maine people cannot afford access to health care, there must be a better way.

A universal, single-payer health care system for the state of Maine is in the works, and it offers a viable solution to our health care crisis. According to a feasibility study conducted in 2002, a universal, single-payer system could save the state $400-$600 million after four years. This type of plan would not only save the state money, but would decrease the amount of out-of-the pocket money spent on health care for the vast majority of individuals, while ensuring quality coverage to all Maine citizens.

As a college student, the health care crisis in the state and country is something I feel must be addressed. After returning from a semester of studying abroad and realizing that, of all the industrialized countries in the world, only the U.S., Turkey and Mexico fail to offer coverage to their citizens, it’s obvious that something needs to be done.

The time has come for a universal, single-payer health care system in the state of Maine.

Caroline Ginsberg, Lewiston

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