Search Form
First, enter a politician or zip code
Now, choose a category

Public Statements

Issue Position: Healthcare

Issue Position

By:
Date:
Location: Unknown

While the recently passed healthcare reforms were a good starting point, there is still much work to do to improve our healthcare system. We need to look at ways to better control healthcare costs for families, improve the quality and delivery of care, and expand access to the millions of Americans who still don't have healthcare coverage.

Moving forward, the policy goals of Congress should be to provide all Americans access to quality healthcare at a lower cost than it's being offered at today.

America spends a larger percentage of its GDP on healthcare than any other Western nation. Healthcare costs--increasing at four to five times the rate of inflation--are spiraling out of control. These costs are a danger to America's economic recovery and a drag on the pocketbooks of American families.

While the recently passed healthcare reforms were a good starting point, there is still much work to do to improve our healthcare system. We need to look at ways to better control healthcare costs for families, improve the quality and delivery of care, and expand access to the millions of Americans who still don't have healthcare coverage.

Moving forward, the policy goals of Congress should be to provide all Americans access to quality healthcare at a lower cost than it's being offered at today.

Defending Recent Advances in Healthcare Reform
The 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (also known as "Obamacare") was not a perfect law. However, it was a good starting point that made healthcare more secure for middle class families. Repealing it would be a mistake and I would oppose any efforts in Congress to do so.

The new law takes control of healthcare out of the hands of insurance companies and puts it into the hands of American families. It also takes step to address free-riders who do not pay for health insurance coverage but still get costly care at emergency rooms, driving up healthcare premiums for everyone.

I will continue to support the following healthcare reforms that were included in the 2010 law:

Insurance for 40 million uninsured Americans (and growing): Americans should have access to healthcare coverage. Coverage keeps Americans healthier, a worthy goal in itself. But coverage also provides the added benefit of lowering healthcare costs for all Americans overall--healthy people don't require expensive procedures and medicines. When people require less healthcare, all our premiums will go down. Healthcare coverage is a win-win for the individual and the insurer.

Coverage of Preexisting Conditions: Americans are now guaranteed healthcare coverage when they purchase an insurance policy. Insurance companies can no longer deny someone care due to a preexisting condition.

Lifetime Coverage: Americans who get sick are now guaranteed healthcare coverage by their insurance provider for the length of their illness. Families no longer have to fear getting dropped by their insurance plans because of caps or limits on the amount of healthcare benefits offered.

Dependent Coverage: Children and young Americans are guaranteed healthcare coverage through their parents until they are 26. Rather than having to drop out of school to pay for their healthcare, young Americans can stay in school or technical training and learn the skills they need to land a family-wage job.
Expanded Preventive Care: Insurance policies will now cover preventative healthcare. Preventive care is a win-win. It saves patients and insurance companies money because problems are diagnosed earlier, patients stay healthier, and costly procedures and medications can often be foregone.

Affordability for Small Businesses: Providing a health care plan should be a benefit small businesses can afford. Small businesses now get a tax break to help them offset the cost of healthcare coverage for their employees.
Holding Insurance Companies Accountable: Insurance companies are now required to spend the bulk of the money you pay in premiums on healthcare -- not on advertisements or expensive salaries for executives.

Bringing Down Healthcare Costs

The cost of healthcare in America is skyrocketing. For the sake of individuals, small businesses, and the health of the economy, we can and should do more in the area of cost containment. Some key actions we can take:

Expand access to prevention and wellness programs that cut costs and keep people healthier.

Crack down on fraud and abuse in the private and public healthcare system.
Restructure the current payment system and incentives within healthcare to reward high-quality, cost-effective medicine--not waste and abuse.
Hold insurance companies accountable.

Attract and retain more primary care physicians.

Ten percent of Medical School graduates go into primary care, a fraction of what it once was.

The Medicare reimbursement system provides a powerful disincentive for primary care physicians, and needs to be changed. While the healthcare reform legislation made changes to this system, it must be expanded upon to ensure rural providers are not put at a disadvantage. Studies have shown when a patient has access to an ongoing primary care physician, their ongoing costs are reduced and they stay healthier.

For the first time, the 2010 healthcare reform legislation allowed funds to go directly to community clinics to create more slots for more doctors to be trained. We should continue down this path in the future.

Continue to incentivize electronic medical records, and other modernization of healthcare administration

Innovation in Healthcare

Encouraging scientific and medical innovation is the only way our nation will create a modern healthcare system. Investment now in new science, new technologies, and the adoption of best practices across the healthcare system will improve efficiency and provide better healthcare to Americans.

We need to:

Strengthen comparative effectiveness research and utilization throughout the healthcare system.

Incentivize flexibility in the public and private healthcare system to adopt best practices and reduce costs while increasing quality and value.

Modernize the FDA approval system to allow more competition, innovation, and safe, responsible patient access to emerging treatments and technologies.
Women's Healthcare

Last year Republicans in Congress nearly shut down the federal government over funding for mammogram screenings and birth control. Congress needs to understand that using funding for women's healthcare as a bargaining chip is unacceptable. Women and their doctors are the ones who should be making their healthcare decisions -- not their Member of Congress. Denny trusts women to make the best healthcare decisions for themselves and their families.


Source:
Skip to top
Back to top