Essay on The History of Medicare

Essay on The History of Medicare

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The American Association of Labor Legislation was founded in 1906 by a group of physicians, lawyers, businessmen, professors, labor leaders, politicians, and social workers. This group of reformers first worked for State laws to cover workers hurt in industrial accidents, workers compensation. During the presidential campaign of 1912, Theodore Roosevelt advocated a wide range of social welfare programs. He was defeated and the White House with President Wilson was not interested.
By 1915 workers compensation laws were passed in 30 States. The AALL was inspired by their success and proposed a government health insurance at the State level. They drafted legislation to be presented at various State legislatures. Their model included protection for low income workers with hospital and medical benefits for both workers and their dependants. Public debate began. The AALL needed political support. For two years they were doing well. In 1917 the War Risk Insurance Act was passed. This was health insurance for servicemen and their families. From 1918 to 1920 several State study commissions reported unfavorably on the issue. A California voter referendum on government health insurance was defeated. In the New York state assembly, the bill was defeated. Soon after, the campaign for government health insurance collapsed. The public philosophy shapes the public policy. Public attitudes in those days leaned toward government as the last resort. Government responsibility was to ensure maximum freedom of private enterprise. It was felt society progressed by the rule “survival of the fittest”. Government interference would upset the natural evolution of society. Those wanting reform couldn’t agree themselves as to the best way to achieve change...

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Center for Medicare Advocacy Inc. Retrieved from
U.S. Social Security Administration..Historical background and development of Social Security. Retrieved from
U.S. Social Security Administration. Special Selections: Detailed Chronology.
Rosenblatt R.A., Andrilla C.H., Curtin T., Hart, L.G. .Shortages of medical personnel at community health centers. The Journal of the American Medical Association. AMA. 2006;295(9):1042-1049. doi: 10.1001/jama.295.9.1042. Retrieved from
Congressional Budget Office (2007). The long term outlook for health care spending. Retrieved from

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