Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg on Tuesday released a plan his campaign said is intended to secure health “equity” and combat systemic discrimination in the U.S. health care system.
Mr. Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, would immediately launch a task force devoted to the issue after entering the White House and launch a $5 billion investment effort in “health equity zones” to try to combat the problem.
“We are long overdue in transforming our health and public health systems not towards neutrality, but towards anti-racism, -misogyny, -homophobia, -ableism, and -xenophobia,” the plan says.
The plan would also involve a public health infrastructure fund aimed at supporting state and local health departments with a federal contribution starting at $500 million.
It also calls for additional training of health care professions to “identify and reduce bias” in the U.S. health care system and funding for research into curing diseases that disproportionately affect minority populations.
Mr. Buttigieg has been on the rise in recent polling on the 2020 Democratic presidential field but has struggled to gain support among black voters, a key voting bloc in states like South Carolina.
His broader health care proposals include a “public option” to compete with private health insurance plans, in contrast to the “Medicare for All” government-run system championed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont.
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