The Checkered History of U.S. Health Reform

Check out The New England Journal of Medicine's excellent interactive timeline charting the history of health care reform in the U.S.

Beginning in 1912, when the Progressive Party of Theodore Roosevelt endorses health reform, through 1935 when the first compulsory health insurance bill failed to pass Congress, to 1971 when Richard Nixon backs a plan to require employers to pay for health insurance (Ted Kennedy counters with a single-payer proposal; both plans fail), to the present state of limbo, the graphic offers snapshots of important milestones and NEJM articles that span the years.

For another thoughtful perspective, read Rick Hertzberg in The New Yorker this week on President Obama's health care summit and why the current bill under consideration, for better or worse, is already bipartisan.

This program aired on March 4, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.

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Rachel Zimmerman Reporter
Rachel Zimmerman previously reported on health and the intersection of health and business for WBUR. She is working on a memoir about rebuilding her family after her husband’s suicide. 



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