FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 10th, 2018
Contact: Dylan Dusseault
Former Cigna Executive Wendell Potter Takes the Helm of Health Care Advocacy Group Seeking to Rally Business Leaders Around Medicare for All
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Business Initiative for Health Policy (BIHP) announced that former health insurance industry executive turned whistle-blower Wendell Potter will be the organization’s new President.
With over two decades as an executive for the nation’s largest health insurance corporations including Humana and Cigna, Potter brings an insider’s knowledge of the industry’s policy and messaging tactics that have left the United States as the only developed nation without guaranteed universal health care. Potter will lead the group’s aggressive strategy to organize business owners around a national Medicare for All program.
“Take it from me, a former executive at Cigna: we do not need health insurance companies. In fact, the profit-driven healthcare industry is an existential threat to American business, a drag on the United States economy, and an obstacle to international competitiveness.” said Wendell Potter, newly minted President of the Business Initiative for Health Policy. “I am proud to lead this organization as we drive the essential work of making the economic case for securing health care for every single American through a federally financed insurance system.”
BIHP’s announcement comes amidst growing public momentum for affordable and accessible health care. In the November midterms, voters in Idaho, Nebraska and Utah voted to expand Medicaid for over 300,000 people and elected governors in Maine and Kansas were also elected on their support for Medicaid expansion. National polls show that Medicare for all commands broad support in the U.S., and even boasts majority support among registered Republican voters.
“To win Medicare for All we need to expand our movement to include more leadership from the small business community that is being crushed by corporate insurance costs, and we have to make a clear argument to employers that this is going to help them manage their healthcare costs” said Alex Lawson, Executive Director at Social Security Works. “Wendell Potter’s leadership at the Business Initiative for Health Policy can lead that effort by giving a voice to the millions of businesses across the country who are sick of being ripped off by corporate insurance vulture.”
BIHP plans to recruit and deploy a group of business owners, to act as Medicare for All advocates amongst their peers and lawmakers. They will also conduct trainings for business owners to present the business case for Medicare for All to local business groups, and give business owners the chance to come to Capitol hill and speak with their members of Congress.
“I’ve been in business for decades, and as a CEO, it’s my job to understand how to create efficient systems that deliver a high-quality product at low costs,” said Richard Master, Founder and CEO of MCS, North America’s leading supplier of picture frames and decorative mirrors, and Board Member of BIHP. “It wasn’t long before one thing became painfully obvious to me: the only way we can have universal health care at low cost is Medicare for All. I’m excited for Wendell to help bring more business owners into the conversation, and advocate alongside patients, workers, and medical professionals in pursuit of this desperately needed reform”
About the Business Initiative for Health Policy:
The Business Initiative for Health Policy is a public education and advocacy effort focused on advancing the business and economic rationale for adopting a Medicare for All system in the United States.
BIHP believe the current profit-driven healthcare system poses an existential threat to American business, and that its continuation will threaten profits for business owners, adversely affect innovation and entrepreneurialism, depress wages for millions of working Americans, and hamper international competitiveness, and that a Medicare for All system is the only economically sustainable way to design a universal healthcare system.