Friday, May 1, 2009

Budget reconciliation process on Health Care affects your health.

Hopefully the plan for health care in the U.S. will be under bi-partisan craftsmanship. The Budget reconciliation process, if used here, will create a plan that will have almost 1/2 of the population left out of the creation process.

This would not be a good situation for a president who campaigned, in part, on his ability to reach across the isle.

It would not be a good for the population, as if it is fast tracked, the overall concerns of "We, the People" will not be fully heard.

Providers will choose alternative channels, since there is no way to force them to accept more patients and give less care for less money. Those with short memories need only look what happened in MD about 10 years ago, or what is happening in Massachusetts and other states, today.

If we've learned anything at all from the last year of Congress, with the Stimulus Bill and TARP, Congress moving quickly spells major expenses and lack of control for us now, and our future generations.

"We, the People" have an obligation, and a right to be heard, and be involved fully in the process. Do not let Congress adversely affect the quality of life just to "do something".

Those who have followed my posts know the risks we have if we allow "any" system to be put in place. A plan like used in most European nations, Canada, or our own VA or Medicare system will leave us with limited access to providers.

Such a system will have more Doctors retiring, more going to limited "boutique" access practices, and less accepting the public limited access and limited fee system.
Massachusetts's is on the leading edge, with several state mandates, and they are experiencing Doctor shortages, lack of care, and major increases in ER use.

Trends showing increased lack of care, denial of care, limited access to medications, denied coverage are well documented in Medicare recipients, as well as in Universal "one payer" (one controller of health care access) systems.

I, for one, with 5 family members as Medical providers, am scared to turn 65, because I loose coverage levels and access I enjoy now.

Please, follow the process, and remain active in the political agenda. Your health depends on it.

Health May Go On Fast Track

Democratic congressional leaders have come out with a 2010 budget resolution conference agreement that includes health reform and estate tax provisions.

Democrats and Republicans have posted separate texts and analyses of the 2010 budget resolution agreement on the Senate Budget Committee website, at

The conference agreement resolves differences between the Senate version, S. Con. Res. 13, and the House version, H.Con. Res. 85.

Here is a "side by side" comparison posted by the Republican members of the Senate Budget Committee.

Congress has agreed to handle health reform measures through the ordinary legislative process until Oct. 15, officials say. If no legislation passes by that date, Congress may consider health reform through the budget reconciliation process.

Supporters of a bill usually need to get the cooperation of 60 senators to get the bill to the Senate floor. When Congress includes a measure in the budget reconciliation process, supporters need just 51 votes in the Senate.

Robelynn Abadie, president of the Association of Health Insurance Advisors, Falls Church, Va., says she is disappointed that health reform could end up becoming part of the budget reconciliation process but welcomes the decision to let lawmakers try to craft a bipartisan health reform plan through the ordinary legislative process until October:

“A health care bill written entirely by Democrats would almost certainly create a new public health insurance program,” Abadie warned.

Continuing with bipartisan efforts offers the best chance of coming up with “an agreement on health care that will stand the test of time,” says John Greene, a vice president at the National Association of Health Underwriters, Arlington, Va.

“Reconciliation would make it difficult to achieve bipartisan health care reform that addresses the core issues of cost, access, and quality together,” says Robert Zirkelbach, a spokesman for America’s Health Insurance Plans, Washington.

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