Medical students embrace Medicare for all

Ed Weisbart | | May 16, 2012

If you ever want to rekindle your hope for American medicine, spend time with medical students. These bright, energetic minds are going into medicine for all the right reasons — to help people, relieve suffering and find new ways to cure illness and eradicate disease.

Their idealism is a pleasure to behold, particularly to a veteran physician like me. Yet I'm painfully aware of how our current health care 'system" can undermine students' idealism, especially if they see no alternative.

Fortunately, a better alternative is waiting in the wings: a single-payer, improved Medicare-for-all program. Most Americans, including 59 percent of physicians, want access to an improved Medicare. I'm pleased to report that our physicians-in-training are strong supporters of this truly universal, comprehensive and affordable alternative.

Why? Even before they graduate, today's medical students learn how our Byzantine, antiquated system of patchwork private insurance undermines medical care. They recognize an imperative to correct social injustice, for both moral and pragmatic reasons...