Filed Under:Markets, Employee Benefits

Vermont working on single-payer system

Workers take calls for Vermont's health care exchange in Burlington, Vt. (AP photo/Toby Talbot)
Workers take calls for Vermont's health care exchange in Burlington, Vt. (AP photo/Toby Talbot)

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — As states open insurance marketplaces amid uncertainty about whether they're a solution for health care, Vermont is eyeing a bigger goal, one that more fully embraces a government-funded model.

The state has a planned 2017 launch of the nation's first universal health care system, a sort of modified Medicare-for-all that has long been a dream for many liberals.

Vermont also has little income diversity, Nelson said. In general, people with lower incomes who don't pay into a health care system make it costlier for other people.

Then there's the fact that Vermont is close to universal health care already. Lavarreda noted that the state became a leader in insuring children in the 1990s. Now 96 percent of Vermont children have coverage, and 91 percent of the overall population does, second only to Massachusetts.

Copyright 2016 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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Nichole Morford

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