LETTER: NY Health Is About Saving Lives, Francine Furtado, Newsday

By Francine Furtado, Port Washington, August 28, 2018

I was appalled by the Aug. 12 editorial, “The painful questions of single-payer care.”

Does the editorial board really believe our wealthiest neighbors would flee New York over tax schedules not suggested by anything in the language of the New York Health Act? What does it say that the board expresses more dismay about the anticipated reaction of the ultrawealthy than about the damage our broken health care inflicts on so many?

No New Yorker benefits when epidemics rage — not family members of those caught in opioid addiction, and not business owners whose partners, managers and employees stress over impaired friends and family or fight addiction themselves.

Nor do New Yorkers benefit from emergency rooms crowded with patients who cannot pay for primary care, or who wait so long that treatable conditions become life-threatening and expensive. Medical personnel burn out when patients can’t afford out-of-pocket expenses and insurers deny the care they prescribe.

Health care costs are opaque, uncontrollable and on track to consume our entire gross domestic product. Worse, our public health is deteriorating before our eyes.

Newsday rants about the “perils” of single-payer, but misses what matters most: The New York Health Act is about saving lives — our lives.

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