Bernie Sanders Health Care Plan

Senator Bernie Sanders has proposed a “medicare for all” solution.  His aim is to build upon the success of the Affordable Care Act to achieve universal health care for everyone.  His website states,

“Bernie’s plan would create a federally administered single-payer health care program. Universal single-payer health care means comprehensive coverage for all Americans.”

Something he mentions and outlines in the video below:

According to his website it will cover the entire continuum of health care:

  • inpatient to outpatient care
  • preventative to emergency care
  • primary care to specialty care
  • long-term and palliative care;
  • vision,
  • hearing and oral health care;
  • mental health and substance abuse services;
  • prescription medications,
  • medical equipment,
  • supplies,
  • diagnostics
  • and treatments.

He goes on to say,

“Patients will be able to choose a health care provider without worrying about whether that provider is in-network and will be able to get the care they need without having to read any fine print or trying to figure out how they can afford the out-of-pocket costs.”

Sen. Sanders plan would be paid for by:

  • 2.2% income-based premium paid by households
  • Employers would pay a 6.2% income based health care premium.
  • Taxing capital gains and dividends the same as income
  • Income tax rates for those making between $250,000 and $500,000 would be 37%
  • Income tax rates for those making between $500,000 and $2 million would be 43%
  • Income tax rate for amounts over $10 million would be 52%
  • Limit tax deductions for households making over $250,000
  • Estate tax that would apply to anyone who inherits over $3.5 million
  • Savings from the expiration of health related tax expenditures.

As his website states with medicare for all:

“As a patient, all you need to do is go to the doctor and show your insurance card. Bernie’s plan means no more copays, no more deductibles and no more fighting with insurance companies when they fail to pay for charges.”


Will families and people save money?  His website states the following:

  • This year a family of four taking the standard deduction and an income of $28,800 or less will not pay the 2.2% tax.
  • A family of four making $50,000 a year taking the standard deduction would pay $466 a year
  • A business with an employee who makes $50,000 a year would have an average health care cost of $3,100.
  • The site estimates that the average working family paid $4,955 in premiums, $1,318 in deductibles.  With a cost of $466 a year the savings to them under this plan would be just over $5,800.

Sen. Sanders estimate of the average yearly premiums and deductible comes from a 2015 Keiser Family Foundation study on employer health benefits.  The math to get to his figures is as follows:

  • ($50,000 in earnings – standard deduction and personal exemption of $28,800)*.022 = $466.40
  • (Annual Premium of $4,955 + $1,318 deductible) – 466.4 = $5,806.60

Ultimately how much money you save under this plan depends on two factors:

  • Your earnings (after the deductibles)
  • Your current total health care costs

I have found three online calculator/estimators for calculating savings built by volunteers not associated with the campaign:




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