The proposed Maryland Health Security Act has put the idea of single payer healthcare back on the table. The Maryland chapter of Physicians for a National Health Care Program has summarized its main features and provides a link to the bill. It proposes to lower health care costs by broadening the pool of the insured, lowering administrative costs, and negotiating for better prices on drugs and medical devices (anyone who has purchased pharmaceuticals outside the US will attest that this make a large difference).
Real News Network has run a series of interviews on this plan. You can view Part 1 for an overview. I thought the second and third segments, on the economics, would be of particular interest to readers. Gerald Friedman of UMass Amherst has done a study of the plan which ascertained that it would produce considerable savings, which he describes in Part 2. Part 3 discusses broader economic ramifications, for instance, that employers in Maryland would enjoy a competitive advantage relative to other states, and that implementation of the plan would lead to some businesses shifting more of their operations into Maryland, thus increasing the state’s tax base.