VI. Back to the Future

 The passage of the Massachusetts Health Care Reform statute mandating universal insurance coverage and a focus on reducing racial and ethnic health care disparities presents a unique opportunity to improve the quality of health care experienced by Massachusetts residents. As this article demonstrates, some of the elements for success are present in the statute and in the environment for providing health care services in the state. It remains to be seen whether the state can overcome initial missteps. Finally, the true test of any such effort is whether the state is able to make the long term investment of resources and political will required to maintain universal coverage and to continue to reduce disparities. In 1988, Massachusetts enacted, but never implemented, a universal health care law. Eventually, the law was repealed. The state created a subsidized drug program for seniors and certain others in 1990 through a Medicaid expansion. Perhaps the new legislation will enable Massachusetts to build success on these earlier experiences.


. Associate Professor of Law, Suffolk University Law School.