Modern Healthcare - - Opinions Editorials -

“The good news in yes­ter­day’s Se­nate Fi­nance Com­mit­tee vote for health­care re­form was that Repub­li­can Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine joined the ef­fort and re­warded the push for bi­par­ti­san back­ing by Pres­i­dent Obama and com­mit­tee chair­man Max Bau­cus. The bad news was the bill it­self—a small step for­ward, but too skimpily funded to make the kind of dif­fer­ence that the pub­lic is count­ing on. ... Congress should keep the bill’s rev­enue sources and look at oth­ers, in­clud­ing the House pro­posal for a sur­tax on the very rich ...”


“Se­nate Demo­cratic leaders will now try to rec­on­cile the Fi­nance Com­mit­tee bill with the more free-spending al­ter­na­tive pro­posed by the Se­nate Health Com­mit­tee. They should take the op­por­tu­nity to ad­dress the af­ford­abil­ity prob­lem and the in­cen­tive to forgo cov­er­age, both of which in­ter­fere with the bill’s ef­forts to con­trol costs. ... Sub­si­dies may need to be higher than the Fi­nance Com­mit­tee pro­posed, but Congress should also give the mar­ket flex­i­bil­ity to de­velop more af­ford­able op­tions for cov­er­age.”


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