House Concurrent Resolution No. 23



      Whereas, every person in Missouri and in the United States deserves access to affordable, quality health care; and


            Whereas, there is a growing crisis in health care in the United States of America, manifested in rising health care costs, increased premiums, out-of-pocket spending, decreased international business competitiveness, and massive layoffs; and


            Whereas, approximately 635,000 to 707,000 Missourians lacked health insurance in 2005; and


            Whereas, those insured now often experience unacceptable medical debt and sometimes life-threatening delays in obtaining health care; and


            Whereas, one-half of all personal bankruptcies are due to illnesses or medical bills; and


            Whereas, the termination of Medicaid in 2008 and the rising cost of insuring state employees and teachers can best be met not by limiting benefits, but by expanding them under a national, publicly-funded health insurance program; and


            Whereas, the complex bureaucracy arising from our system of fragmented, for-profit, multi-payer system of health care financing consumes approximately 30% of United States health care spending; and


            Whereas, independent research by Kenneth E. Thorpe, PhD. found in 2003 that if Missouri adopted a single-payer, universal health program with benefits more generous than 75% of all private insurance benefits in the state, Missouri health care spending would decline by a savings of $1.3 billion in administrative costs alone under a streamlined administrative structure; and


            Whereas, United States Representative John Conyers has introduced H.R. 676, the United States National Health Insurance Act, in the United States House of Representatives, and this act would provide a universal, comprehensive, single-payer system of high quality national health insurance:


            Now, therefore, be it resolved that the members of the House of Representatives of the Ninety-fourth General Assembly, First Regular Session, the Senate concurring therein, hereby respectfully urge the United States Congress to enact the United States National Health Insurance Act sponsored by Representative Conyers; and


            Be it further resolved that the Chief Clerk of the Missouri House of Representatives be instructed to prepare a properly inscribed copy of this resolution for President George W. Bush and each member of the Missouri Congressional delegation.