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BRIEFLY

December 03, 1987

Rep. Richard Gephardt (D-Mo.) called for legislation forcing businesses to offer health insurance "just as they must now provide a minimum wage." Gephardt said his "minimum health insurance requirement" would help assure that workers' medical costs would be limited to $3,000 per year. "Health insurance in the modern age is just another cost of doing business," Gephardt said. Under his proposal, workers could be forced to pick up a portion of the cost of premiums, and Gephardt said he would set up regional insurance "pools" for small businesses that don't qualify for group plans from private insurance companies. In addition, Gephardt said he would put in place a system of long-term health-care insurance, which he said would be modeled after the Social Security system.

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