The American people have spoken. They oppose government-run health care. Republicans are on the side of the American people.
What Americans want are common-sense, responsible solutions that address the rising cost of health care and other major problems. In the national Republican address on Saturday, October 31, 2009, House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) discussed Republicans’ plan for common-sense health care reform our nation can afford. Boehner’s address emphasized four common-sense reforms that will lower health care costs and expand access to quality care without a government takeover of our nation’s health care system that kills jobs, raises taxes on small businesses, or cuts Medicare for seniors:
- Number one: let families and businesses buy health insurance across state lines.
- Number two: allow individuals, small businesses, and trade associations to pool together and acquire health insurance at lower prices, the same way large corporations and labor unions do.
- Number three: give states the tools to create their own innovative reforms that lower health care costs.
- Number four: end junk lawsuits that contribute to higher health care costs by increasing the number of tests and procedures that physicians sometimes order not because they think it's good medicine, but because they are afraid of being sued.
For more information about some of the other common-sense health care reforms proposed by Republicans, please visit the links below:
- Empowering Patients First Act (Republican Study Committee Health Care Reform Bill, introduced July 30, 2009)
- Improving Health Care for All Americans Act (Shadegg Health Care Reform Bill, introduced July 14, 2009)
- Medical Rights & Reform Act (Kirk-Dent Health Care Reform Bill, introduced June 16, 2009)
- Help Efficient, Accessible, Low-cost, Timely Healthcare (HEALTH) Act (Gingrey medical liability reform bill, introduced June 6, 2009)
- Small Business Health Fairness Act of 2009 (Johnson small business health plans bill, introduced May 21, 2009)
- Promoting Health and Preventing Chronic Disease through Prevention and Wellness Programs for Employees, Communities, and Individuals Act of 2009 (Castle Wellness & Prevention Bill, introduced July 31, 2009)
- Improved Employee Access to Health Insurance Act of 2009 (Deal auto-enrollment bill, introduced October 15, 2009)
- Health Insurance Access for Young Workers and College Students Act of 2009 (Blunt bill to improve health insurance coverage of dependents, introduced October 21, 2009)
Democrats have proposed the establishment of a public-option government-run health plan. Some of the consequences of this government take over of health care include higher costs, lower quality and fewer choices.
Government programs constitute nearly half of all health care spending, and further increasing government's clout may well limit patient care as a way to contain costs. The federal government already imposes price controls on doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies. Controls on patient procedures are likely to follow.
Spending and Tax Increases:
Democrats proposed more than $850 billion in tax increases on small businesses and middle class families to pay for their health care reform plan. Health spending will jump from 16.6% to 17.6% of GDP this year alone. House Democrats are calling for an additional $1.6 trillion in new health spending - on top of the more than $150 billion in health spending in the "stimulus" bill.
Massive, Forced Dislocation of Currently Insured Individuals:
Analysis by actuaries at the independent Lewin Group found that nearly 114 million individuals could involuntarily lose their private coverage due to a government-run plan, and be forced into the public plan.
Reduced Revenue for Providers:
Other analysis by the Lewin Group found that a government-run plan reimbursing at Medicare rates would cause hospitals' total revenue to drop by nearly 5% ($36.5 billion), and physicians' total revenue to decline by nearly 7% ($36.4 billion).
Poorer Coverage and Access:
CBO Director Doug Elmendorf recently testified that traditional Medicare provides a benefit package 15% lower than the standard employer-sponsored plan which is one reason why more than four in five Medicare beneficiaries rely on supplemental health coverage. In Medicaid, low provider participation rates often lead to long waits for care, such that low-income Americans would prefer private insurance coverage to Medicaid by a more than two-to-one margin.
Reports by the Government Accountability Office and other watchdog groups have highlighted persistent problems with fraud in government-run Medicare - estimating tens of billions per year, at taxpayer expense.
For more information about the Democrats' government-run plan, please visit these links:
- Democrats’ Government Takeover Will Raise Medicare Premiums By 20%
- A “Trigger” for Destroying Americans’ Health Coverage
- Reading Guide - Democrat Health "Reform"