Government has not begun to reform our health care

Published 9:03 pm Thursday, September 10, 2009

Dear editor,

While the debate rages on, Washington needs to take a step back and understand what America is saying to them.

We do not want what you are offering as health care reform.

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As a matter of fact government needs to clearly understand its role in this debate. Their proposal is a knee-jerk reaction to a problem that is not as big as we have been told.

The number 47,000,000 is tossed around as being an honest estimate when in fact there are really only about 13,000,000 that really can’t afford health insurance.

More glaring than that reality is the fact no one is denied health care for lack of ability to pay.

What is being totally ignored is the real solutions to the problems in the health care industry.

1. Portability equals affordability. We can buy all other insurances from any other state we would like, but government regulations will not allow anyone to shop across state lines, thus killing competitive forces in the market. This should be top priority in reform.

2. Tort reform. Doctors must purchase enormous amounts of malpractice insurance for fear of being sued.

Those costs are passed on to the patients. A reasonable cap on damages is essential, especially punitive damages.

What that means is cutting out deep pockets for those who push this type of litigation.

3. Fraud and waste. Figures show that of the $500,000,000,000 spent through Medicare and Medicaid each year aproximately 36 percent can be attributed to fraud and waste.

That’s roughly $180,000,000 that slip through the cracks of these government-run entities each year.

What are the people who are paid to run these programs doing or not doing to allow this to happen?

Some may disagree, but until our politicians get a spine, real reform as described above will not happen.

Finally, please realize that allowing the government to have the bigger role in health care is not the solution.

This is a government of the people, for the people and by the people.

Call your elected representatives today at 202-321-3421 and let them know that you want real reform.

Darrel McIlwain