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Ohio Democratic Lawmakers Say Their Universal Health Plan will Ensure Coverage for Ohioans

photo of Teresa Fodor

Two Democratic state lawmakers have proposed a plan for universal health-care coverage for Ohio: the "Ohio Health Security Act."

Reps. Teresa Fedor of Toledo and Bernadine Kennedy Kent of Columbus say their plan would ensure all Ohioans have health insurance – including the 1.5 million who don’t have it now. Debbie Silversteen with the Single Payer Action Network of Ohio says because the system would be publicly funded, that means taxes.

“We are already paying through taxes about two-thirds of the health care cost in this nation. The one-third that we’re not paying for are generally healthy people between 18 and 64. So it’s not that much more to add those people in.”

Other states that have investigated single-payer insurance have found the price tag is in the billions.

Democrats are in a very small minority in the Ohio Legislature, and Republican House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger said he doesn’t expect the idea to go over well with his colleagues.

Click herefor a Politifact examination of the claims over the cost of single-payer insurance.

Karen is a lifelong Ohioan who has served as news director at WCBE-FM, assignment editor/overnight anchor at WBNS-TV, and afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor in WTAM-AM in Cleveland. In addition to her daily reporting for Ohio’s public radio stations, she’s reported for NPR, the BBC, ABC Radio News and other news outlets. She hosts and produces the Statehouse News Bureau’s weekly TV show “The State of Ohio”, which airs on PBS stations statewide. She’s also a frequent guest on WOSU TV’s “Columbus on the Record”, a regular panelist on “The Sound of Ideas” on ideastream in Cleveland, appeared on the inaugural edition of “Face the State” on WBNS-TV and occasionally reports for “PBS Newshour”. She’s often called to moderate debates, including the Columbus Metropolitan Club’s Issue 3/legal marijuana debate and its pre-primary mayoral debate, and the City Club of Cleveland’s US Senate debate in 2012.