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Article
July 14, 1989

What Should Be Done About the Uninsured Poor?

Author Affiliations

The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health Baltimore, Md

The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health Baltimore, Md

JAMA. 1989;262(2):209-210. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03430020051022
Abstract

To the Editor.—  Dr Blendon's1 article entitled "What Should Be Done About the Uninsured Poor?" outlines a proposal to cover the uninsured poor that the author believes would enjoy popular support. Dr Blendon calls for employermandated coverage with federal subsidization of the premiums of low-income wage earners and the nonworking poor.Dr Blendon, however, dismisses another proposal to resolve the problems of the uninsured poor, the establishment of national health insurance. The reasons he gives are that (1) people are not willing to pay the higher taxes that such a program would entail to cover the costs of expanding health benefits coverage to the whole population and (2) people are not convinced that they personally would benefit from such a universal insurance program, since the majority already have access to health insurance coverage.In support of the first proposition, Dr Blendon quotes polls that show that while the majority

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