Sales Tax to Fund Universal Healthcare Considered in Oregon

A bipartisan group of lawmakers in Oregon is discussing a proposal that would use a sales tax to fund the state's universal healthcare, according to an article by Lund Report.

If realized, Oregon would be the first state in the U.S. to create a dedicated funding source to extricate health insurance coverage from employment. Other states, including Vermont and Rhode Island, have proposed similar ideas to fund universal coverage.

The proposed 5-7 percent sales tax would generate between $11 and $12 billion, enough money for Oregon to provide every resident with an essential benefits package, according to the report. This would free individuals and businesses from paying a health premium and instead replace the individual payments with a sales tax based on consumption.

Senate Bill 972, called the Oregon Healthcare Ingenuity Plan, asks the Oregon Health Authority to consider the idea and return to the legislature with recommendations in 2012. The plan would then be put to a vote on the Nov. 2012 ballot.

Read the article by Lund Report on the Oregon sales tax.

Read more on universal healthcare:

-Donald Berwick Blasts Medicare Vouchers, Defends Reform Law

-Vermont House Passes Single-Payor Health Bill

-Massachusetts Medical Bankruptcies Continue Despite State Health Reform

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