Filmmaker Endorses San Francisco Health Program
Filmmaker Michael Moore on Wednesday met with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom (D) to endorse the city's pioneer program that seeks to provide access to health care services to all city residents, the San Francisco Examiner reports (Eslinger, San Francisco Examiner, 6/14).
Healthy San Francisco is expected to cost about $200 million annually. The city will contribute $104 million that it already spends on medical care for the uninsured. Premiums from plan members are expected to generate $56 million (California Healthline, 5/9).
The program is set to take effect in July.
The press conference with Moore and Newsom also focused on Moore's new documentary, "Sicko," about the U.S. health care system (San Francisco Examiner, 6/14).
"Sicko" premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in France last month. In the film, Moore documents stories of the uninsured, individuals who were denied care and people who were improperly discharged by hospitals (California Healthline, 6/13).
A summary of opinion pieces regarding Moore's documentary appear below.
- Daniel Weintraub, Sacramento Bee: "Moore is right that we need to fix our health insurance system, and his film at its best forces us to think about whether we all should do more to help each other deal with the cost of illness and injury that strike the population more or less at random," Weintraub writes in his Bee column. But the film highlights a "ridiculous extension of dependency that opponents of single-payer health care fear will be the inevitable result of the ever-expanding government Moore advocates," Weintraub concludes (Weintraub, Sacramento Bee, 6/14).
- Steve Wiegand, Sacramento Bee: Moore's documentary "probably won't" have even a fraction of "the impact in California that Moore and his fans think it might," Wiegand writes in his Bee column. Sen. Sheila Kuehl's (D-Los Angeles) single-payer bill (SB 840) "strives to do what Moore is advocating. But it's DOA when it gets to Schwarzenegger's desk," Wiegand writes. "Even if it weren't, a companion bill needed to finance it by raising taxes wouldn't get the two-thirds legislative vote it needs," according to Wiegand (Wiegand, Sacramento Bee, 6/14).
- Pia Lopez, Sacramento Bee: "There's more than enough money in the U.S. health care system to pay for universal care," Lopez writes in a Bee opinion piece. "Surely, can-do Americans can figure out how to pay for a system that provides health care for everybody. On that simple point, Moore is right on," Lopez concludes (Lopez, Sacramento Bee, 6/14).