Healthcare (September 2009)

Insurance on the job in jeopardy

Today, millions of Americans depend on their job for health insurance. But the insurance coverage that workers across the nation enjoy is in jeopardy. As healthcare costs continue to rise, more and more employers find that they simply cannot afford to provide health insurance to their employees. With no place else to turn, millions of these Americans are forced to join the ranks of the uninsured. As we’ve outlined in a new report on, the instability in the employer-sponsored market threatens families, businesses and our country.

Give tax credits for private coverage

As we move forward with the debate on healthcare reform, we must remember that any legislation we pass will have a profound impact on all Americans for generations to come. If we get it right, our children and grandchildren will reap the benefits. If we get it wrong, they will bear the burden of the massive debt we place on their shoulders.

Safeway emphasis on preventive care a model for nation

Over the last several weeks, I have held four town hall meetings across Maryland to talk with my constituents about our healthcare system and the need for reform. Many of the people I spoke with urged me to ensure that Congress includes programs that emphasize prevention and encourage healthy living habits.

Americans’ skepticism thoughtful

I held nearly 100 events across Missouri last month, discussing healthcare and the ways we can provide higher quality, more competition and access for everyone. I heard from single mothers, small-business employees, retirees concerned about Medicare cuts, manufacturers, and journalists. They asked well-considered questions about the Obama administration’s plan to orchestrate a trillion-plus-dollar takeover of our nation’s healthcare system.

We can help people now, or ponder later what we could have done for them

America is sick. Every day, our citizens die of illnesses like diabetes or cardiovascular disease. We watch our neighbors, our friends and our loved ones succumb to these preventable conditions, thinking to ourselves, “Had I only…” For some, those thoughts are in vain as the individuals had access to the best physicians, the newest technologies and the most innovative prevention and wellness programs. But for many in this country who are not in that same situation, the “Had I only” thoughts apply all too well. When I look into my constituents’ eyes as they stand before me asking for help, I say to myself, “Now I will.”

All Congress members should agree on one point: system is unsustainable

A physician recently shared a story with me. He spoke of a woman without health insurance who presents to the emergency department with uterine fibroids. He knows this woman: she is a “frequent flier” who often returns to the emergency department when the fibroids deteriorate to the point where she needs to obtain a blood transfusion. So, the woman is admitted and the blood transfusion is performed but the fibroids remain.

Public option enjoys broad support despite falsehoods spread by critics

When Barack Obama — and every other Democratic candidate — pounded the presidential pavement one year ago, the words uttered unequivocally from every mouth were “universal healthcare.” The candidates’ commitment to the concept of a public option was hardly surprising. Voter support for universal healthcare was high.

What this doctor would tell Obama

For the Americans who want healthcare insurance but are denied coverage or cannot afford it, healthcare reform is needed, and you’ll get no argument from me on that. This is an area where President Obama and I agree. Of course, we disagree on some, but not all, methods of achieving meaningful reform, but I do think some change is necessary.