More Nurses, Less Bankers

What if we could end the healthcare crisis dogging our nation—and grow 2.6 million jobs at the same time?

The good news is we can do exactly that. If America summons the courage, and the will, to resolve our healthcare crisis, we can provide our national economy with a genuine and long-term stimulus, and continue moving towards the kind of sustainable development with quality jobs that our nation desperately needs.

A new study with eye popping numbers released by the Institute for Health and Socio-Economic Policy (IHSP) January 13 uncovers the details. You can read it at

Moving to a guaranteed healthcare system would provide a major stimulus for the U.S. economy by creating 2.6 million new jobs– the same number lost in 2008 alone — and infuse $317 billion in business and public revenues, and another $100 billion in wages into the U.S. economy.

Single Payer Promotes Economic Recovery as Well as Solving the Healthcare Nightmare -Deborah Burger, R.N.California Progress Report, January 15, 2009.

Here’s a number that should freak out every U.S. Citizen: A single payer plan insuring that everyone has health care (in this case, the so-called Medicare for All proposal) would cost around 60 billion dollars. That means that we could have this program in place simply by cutting the recently released financial bailout money from 300 billion or so to, say, 200 billion.

What”s more, according to the nurses, the multiplier effects would create millions of new jobs. This is a conservative estimate, too. Imagine, for example, an economy in which small business can be started and run without the expense of health insurance. Imagine the reduced cost of U.S. cars if the automakers no longer had to pay for the health care for their workers.

The cost savings of a single payer plan are just as remarkable. Publicly administered health care programs have lower administration costs, for example, and they can bargain on a large scale for commonly prescribed drugs. The real limiting factor is simply an outdated conservative ideology unwilling to challenge the health care industry and afraid of big-government.

About Ray Watkins

I was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, at Our Lady of the Lake Hospital. I grew up in Houston, as a part of what we only half-jokingly call the Cajun Diaspora. At a certain point during the Regan administration, I had to leave, so I served in the Peace Corps, Philippines, from 1987-89. I didn't want to return to the United States just yet, so I moved to Paris, France, where I lived for three years or so. I then moved back to Austin, Texas, where I had received my Masters Degree, and (eventually) began a Ph.D., which I completed in 1999. I spent a year at Temple University and then accepted a position at Eastern Illinois University where I worked until May of 2006. I now work exclusively on line (although that may change) for Johns Hopkins, the Art Institute Online, and I can be reached most easily via email: raywatkins [that 'at' symbol]

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Post Navigation