Debating Health Care As a Right in New Mexico

"The question is asked with regularity at legislative and congressional hearings, medical and public health conferences, political rallies and policy think tanks: Is health care a right, or a privilege? Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino, an Albuquerque Democrat, long ago decided that health care is a right and that insurance company profit-making prevents people from enjoying that right.

For the second year in a row, Ortiz y Pino has introduced legislation to put the question to a popular vote. If he’s successful, New Mexico’s Constitution would be amended to say, ‘Health care is a fundamental right that is an essential safeguard of human life and dignity. The state shall ensure that every resident has the opportunity to realize this right by establishing a comprehensive system of quality health care that is accessible to each resident on an equitable basis regardless of ability to pay.’

Identical legislation was introduced in the House by Rep. Gail Chasey, D-Albuquerque." […]

Download the full article below.

Check out previous NESRI posts on the advocacy effort in New Mexico here and here and here.