Montpelier, VT — State House — The Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign today released comments on the healthcare system design proposals Dr. William Hsiao presented to the Vermont legislature in January. The comments, along with several questions, focus on the human rights requirements for Vermont’s healthcare system, passed into law by last year’s Act 128. Act 128 incorporated the human rights principles of universality, equity, accountability, transparency, participation and healthcare as a public good into the design of a new healthcare system for Vermont.

“Our healthcare system is broken, and Vermonters are suffering from it. Last year, thousands of Vermonters spoke out to tell their elected representatives that we need a healthcare system that treats health as a human right,” said Vermont Workers’ Center president Peg Franzen. “Act 128 embodies Vermonters’ vision of this system. Our comments apply the principles of Act 128 to the work of Dr. Hsiao and our elected representatives, to ensure that this vision–of a healthcare system that works for everyone–guides their work.“

The comments were prepared using the “Detailed Human Rights Standards for Healthcare Systems” released by the campaign last month, which enable Vermonters and their elected officials to evaluate the three healthcare options proposed by Dr. Hsiao in accordance with the requirements of Vermont’s Universal Access to Health Care law (Act 128). The “Detailed Human Rights Standards for Healthcare Systems” translate the general human rights principles of Act 128 into a set of specific policy questions, to enable logical and consistent evaluation of the “Hsiao” options and any subsequent legislative proposals.

The Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign’s comments on Dr. Hsaio’s draft report are available at the Vermont Workers’ Center website at www.workerscenter.org/hsiao_comments

The “Detailed Human Rights Standards for Healthcare Systems” are available at www.workerscenter.org/assessment