The Struggle Over Health Care

January 17, 2010

The right to comprehensive and free health care is one of the urgent needs of the people.

It's obvious that our country has all the resources necessary to guarantee the right to health care for everyone. But even as our country's health-care crisis has reached epidemic proportions, with over 100 million people unable to afford adequate health coverage, the Democratic and Republican politicians refuse to even discuss real solutions. The health care legislation being considered in Congress is further proof that the capitalist politicians are determined to protect their for-profit system, to continue to slash investments in vital social programs such as Medicare, and to assist the big capitalists to shift the costs of health care coverage onto the backs of the workers.

Fundamental reform of our country's health-care system is a problem which must be solved. The battle lines are clearly drawn. On one side stand the overwhelming majority of the people demanding the right to health care while, on the other side, the capitalist class and it’s politicians are blocking the necessary changes and denying the right to the people.

The experience of the Workers Party is that every day more and more people see the need to defend and win the right to health care.

Unionized workers are waging repeated struggles against the attempts of the companies to cut back or eliminate hard-won health benefits. In the communities, struggles are being waged to keep clinics and hospitals open and to guarantee access to them. Senior citizens are fighting against the government's attacks on Medicare. Many unions, organizations of senior citizens, consumer groups, doctors, nurses and other health care professionals have come out to demand a universal, not for-profit health care system.
The people can only claim the right to health care by coming into the political arena on an independent basis and organizing a political struggle which aims at creating a universal, comprehensive and free health care system.

The immediate steps to push forward this struggle include: 1) organizing a big campaign to popularize the right to health care; 2) joining in the many ongoing struggles – the contract battles of workers, the movement of senior citizens and others – which fight to extend affordable health-care coverage; and 3) demanding that the government take all the steps necessary to guarantee everyone's right to health care.