Our citizens should not have to make a decision between buying food and buying medicine. We need more affordable healthcare in our state. This can be accomplished through a number of legislative actions. Malpractice lawsuits should be capped thereby reducing the need for doctors to practice defensive medicine (unnecessary tests and procedures due to fear of lawsuits). Such capping often results in insurance companies lowering their rates. North Carolina currently has 47 mandates for health insurance companies, increasing by the cost of insurance by approximately 40 percent. Such excessive mandates often single out small businesses and individuals. Reducing our mandates would lower health insurance and encourage more competition by bringing new insurance companies into North Carolina. Tax credits for uninsured workers would also make healthcare more affordable. Norman personally understands the challenge of affordable healthcare. As a small business owner, Norman pays for his and his wife's healthcare costs solely out of pocket.