Thursday, September 10, 2009

My Letter to the Editor on Health Care... Will It Get Published?

OK, I just wrote a letter to The Sun & The R-J. Let's see if it ever gets published. Wish me luck! ;-)

I'm Open to Compromising, But Not Diluting

Overall, I think President Obama's speech on health care was quite good. He spoke eloquently as usual. He stated a good case for health care reform. He finally explained the details of what he wants that we have all been waiting for.

However, there was something in that speech that disturbed me. The President finally defended the proposed Medicare-like public option, but then said he may be willing to sacrifice it for the sake of getting any bill passed. I just can't agree with that.

Do I mind compromise? No. In fact, progressive Democrats have already compromised in foregoing a "Medicare for All", also known as a single-payer, plan that would provide everyone with quality, affordable health care and stop the HMOs from bullying consumers and denying us the care we need as they charge us more and more in premiums. We compromised because we were promised that the public option would be an option we could all choose if we want to.

This is why it's important that a strong Medicare-like public option must be included in the final health care reform package. Without that needed competition, the insurance companies will never feel compelled to abide by President Obama's other proposed reforms, like ending discrimination based on pre-existing conditions. "Co-ops" have been designed by the HMOs to fail, as they already have in areas where they were first implemented, and "triggers" can easily be manipulated by insurance company lobbyists to never be enforced.

So while I am inspired by President Obama's speech to keep working by health care reform, I also feel compelled to call my members of Congress and ask them to ensure a bill with a strong public option is sent to the President's desk so that we the consumers have the final say on our health care decisions, not the insurance companies.

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