The fifth week of the 2017 Legislative Session was a nose-to-the-grindstone kind of week with a busy committee schedule, and minimal session time.
REAL ID came up in Senate and House committees this week. The Senate Transportation Committee passed a bill through that would allow the Department of Public Safety to come into compliance with federal REAL ID standards. Most senators were in agreement that they hoped to pass a clean bill to the Governor. The House bill still contains more controversial language.
Another important event that took place this week was a large press conference featuring DFL legislators, doctors, nurses, and other advocates all in favor of the Minnesota Health Plan. The new universal plan would cut costs and provide quality, affordable care for all Minnesotans. It’s also a refreshing positive alternative to the health reform debate.
The basic tenants of the Minnesota Health Plan include:
- Health care is a basic right.
- Patients and doctors should control their health care, not the government or insurance companies.
- Premiums are based on ability to pay, so they are affordable to all.
- The Minnesota Health Plan saves money by eliminating bureaucratic insurance system, not by denying care.
- All providers are “in-network” – an especially critical factor in Greater Minnesota.