Sir.—The well-intentioned proposal of Brown and Melinkovich1 in the June 1992 issue of AJDC is a collection of very pretty Band-Aids based on the premise that care for the poor is a responsibility of the noble-minded. Developing a cadre of "full-time physicians dedicated to serving the poor" is nowhere near the same as universal access.
I submit that this Lady Bountiful system will not work. How about a single system that provides all essential care available to all our people as other developed countries have? Separate (but supposedly equal) medical systems for the poor have all the realworld problems that plague the Department of Veterans Affairs and Medicaid.
Let us do it right. If poor people would have access to care like everyone else, we would not need another Band-Aid. Let us get behind the Physicians for a National Health Program (312-554-0382) and create a single-payer system that
HESS KW. Band-Aids or Cures? Am J Dis Child. 1993;147(4):369. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1993.02160280019007
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