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Albert Einstein College of Medicine: Debate — Be it Resolved: The United States should adopt the single-payer system.

November 19, 2015 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm


Reception will begin at 6:30pm. The debate will begin at 7:00pm, Eastern.

Please join us for a lively debate on the merits and pitfalls of single payer healthcare, sponsored by students for PHNP. We will focus on the question:

Is single-payer healthcare right for America?

Arguing for single-payer healthcare:

BRI Leonard Rodberg MDLeonard Rodberg, PhD, is Professor and Chair of Urban Studies at Queens College/CUNY. He holds a PhD in Physics received from MIT in 1957. Along with his late wife, Joanne Lukomnik, he was one of the founders of Physicians for a National Health Program. He began his professional life as a nuclear physicist, but he has strayed far afield. Dr. Rodberg has served as Director of the Science Policy Office in the US Arms Control and Disarmament Agency and Resident Fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, DC and has been involved in the struggle for health care reform since 1974, when he led the development of the Dellums Health Service Act. He has served on the Board of the NY Metro Chapter of PNHP for a number of years and is Treasurer and Research Director of the Chapter. He also created and directs the Infoshare Community Data web site (www.infoshare.org).

Elizabeth Rosenthal, MD recently retired from her Mamaroneck practice of dermatology after 35 years.  She continues on the clinical faculty of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.  For the past 5 years she has been an active Board member of the NY Metro chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program. Speaking and writing on health care reform for the past several years, she is a passionate advocate of an expanded and improved “Medicare for All.” She is a graduate of Smith College and NYU Medical School and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Dermatology. She lives in Larchmont with her physician husband, and they are the parents of three  grown sons.

Arguing against single-payer healthcare:

BRI Haynes Beth Executive DirectorBeth Haynes, MD Executive Director, Benjamin Rush Institute Previously in private practice with board certification in both Family Practice and Emergency Medicine, Dr. Beth Haynes has been working full time in healthcare policy for the past six years. She obtained her MD from the University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine and her residency training at University of Wisconsin in Madison. She also volunteers as an executive board member of the Dr. Joseph Warren Institute and is Founder and President of The Black Ribbon Project. She previously served as Senior Health Policy Analyst and Executive Board Member for Docs4PatientCare, and as National Co-Chair of Doc Squads, a project to recruit and train doctors to lead the public healthcare debate. Dr. Haynes has published several op-eds in TownHall.comPJ Media, American Thinker and The Huffington Post. She speaks frequently to citizen and professional groups on healthcare policy, the ACA, and the ethics and economics of medicine.

Raymond Raad, MD MPH is a general and forensic psychiatrist in private practice in Manhattan.  He received his MD from the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons and his MPH in health policy from the Columbia Mailman School of Public Health, and then completed a residency in Psychiatry at the Weill Cornell Medical Center.  He has an interest in health policy, in particular in international comparison of health and medical systems.  He is co-author of Bending the Productivity Curve: Why America Leads the World in Medical Innovation.  http://www.cato.org/publications/policy-analysis/bending-productivity-curve-why-america-leads-world-medical-innovation


POST-EVENT SUMMARY: Fifty people attended the debate, including four BRI students, a former BRI leader (now intern) from Icahn School of Medicine BRI Raymond Raad and Beth Haynes at Einstein Universityat Mt. Sinai, and SUNY-DS who came to support Drs. Raad and Haynes argue against instituting single-payer healthcare in the United States. Given that the majority of the audience came in already supporting single-payer, the slightly larger gain for the opposition indicates a real victory. The event went quite smoothly, and and several students expressed interest in BRI. At the post-debate dinner the students brainstormed plans for more events in the NYC area.

We are very proud of having won the debate. It was broken down by percentages, and while the numbers look small, we are very aware of the fact that in this part of the country most healthcare professionals and students support a single-payer system.

Resolution: The United States should adopt the single payer system.
In the Pre-debate vote, 27% were undecided, 19% were opposed to single-payer, and 54% supported single-payer.
Post-debate, BRI won due to the shifts in undecided and opposed voters: 24% (-3%) undecided ; 21% (+2%) opposed single-payer; and 55% (+1%) supported single-payer.

We are also proud that BRI is becoming so widely recognized that the student organizers from Albert Einstein University reached out to us and invited us to debate this very critical issue.


November 19, 2015
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
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Tauhid Mahmud


Albert Einstein School of Medicine – Riklis Auditorium, Belfer Building
1300 Morris Park Ave
Bronx, NY 10461 United States
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