I won't stop working on patient-centered solutions to our health care crisis until small businesses can afford to cover their employees, individuals struggling to find work can afford to go to the doctor and families have access to quality health care.
Congress passed a health care overhaul that will end up costing Americans $2.6 trillion -- but that giant program did nothing to lower the cost of health care. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office says that the health care law will cause insurance premiums to rise by 10 -- 13%.
To really fix health care, we must get serious about implementing a plan that doesn't grow government but does get at the root causes of rising health care costs in Southwest Washington and across the country. Here are some patient-centered solutions I promote:
* Small Business Health Plans: Big corporations and labor unions are able to pool together to offer employees lower health care rates. Small businesses should have the same opportunities.
* Medical lawsuit reform: We should cap the amount awarded for frivolous junk lawsuits. When excessive monetary awards are given in such lawsuits, we all pay higher prices.
* Expanded Health Savings Accounts: HSA's are tax-free tools that allow you and your family more control over your health care decisions.
* Allow the purchase of insurance across state lines: This would allow you to choose a health care plan offered in any state, not just the few we have in Washington. You could pick a plan that best meets your needs, and your pocketbook.
* Give individuals the same tax treatment as businesses: Big corporations get special tax breaks on health insurance, and individuals should too.