Support the Health Care Reform Act

Opinion: Columns

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Harriet Hausman

Although I know most of the news media is owned by Republican Party donors, I am puzzled by the lack of information relating to the Health Care Reform Act. In its present form, the bill is not all that we would want, but it is a promising start. Some of the positions that it has already established are:

1. More that 32 million Americans can get health care who had no insurance previously.

2. Insurance companies can no longer deny coverage to insured clients who have pre-existing conditions.

3. The Health Care Reform Act also helps people with pre-existing health problems to obtain insurance.

4. The bill offers basic benefits for everyone on Medicare to have free preventive services.

5. The bill has also arranged to close the "doughnut hole" in the Part D drug program.

6. It provides additional coverage such as extending health insurance for adult children until age 26.

7. No longer is the insurance company the decision-maker in health situations. Families with their doctors make their own decisions.

8. People are required to obtain health insurance coverage, but the Health Care Reform Bill offers subsidies for low- and moderate-income families.

9. The bill also makes more folks eligible for Medicaid.

10. The bill offers immediate tax credits to help small businesses buy employee health insurance.

There is also a financial benefit that is not emphasized. Economists estimate almost $150 billion in higher cost in 10 years without health care reform. We taxpayers will have to assume that burden if the Health Care Reform Act is repealed. We should be fighting to improve and implement the bill rather than abolish it.

Let's support efforts to cut insurance company charges and support courageous Republicans and Democrats who are working on our Health Care Reform Act.

Of course, if you have invested in insurance company stock, you will not support my view.

Reader Comments

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Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: July 8th, 2011 9:20 AM

The Republicans control most of the media? Thats good for a laugh. Go to Illinois Docs 4 Patient Care for the other side of this issue. Remember, the President is not going to give up his private taxpayer paid health insurance program for federal employess to join us in this program. Neither will his family. I wonder why? Also, federal elected officials exempted themselves from paying into Social Security and pay into a private system. I wonder why?

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: June 30th, 2011 1:15 PM

Med for all: your premise is false. The govt CAN'T afford to insure the oldest & sickest. Medicare is going bankrupt now, made worse by the HCRA pulling $ 500B from it. The idea that the fed govt can take over 12% of the economy and run it better & cheaper is patently absurd. Health care isn't a commodity, but it is a high value service that costs money, like it or not. Reform Medicare for the truly needy; end state borders for buying Health Plans, and put consumer & doctor back in control.

Medicare for all  

Posted: June 29th, 2011 4:12 PM

If the government can afford to insure the oldest and sickest among us and offer the same coverage to members of Congress, why not extend it to the younger and healthier as well? Business owners and those now without insurance could finally sleep well knowing we are all part of the system, not left to cover health needs individually. Those who don't want "government interference" in healthcare should avoid signing up for Medicare when they retire!

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 29th, 2011 2:12 PM

How would the "real,not convoluted, private system" work? Would a for-profit insurance company still be involved in the process? Would they be able to deny coverage for a pre-existing condition? Would there be any regulation or oversight? Our economy cannot sustain out-of-control health care costs. President Obama explained that in response to the crisis. I would like to hear about an approach that reduced costs and protected patient rights. Health care is not a commodity.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: June 29th, 2011 8:42 AM

Please see the riots today in Greece as one eventual outcome of government takeover of healthcare, expansion of public employees, takeover of private business, and explosion of govt debt as a % of GDP...The HCRA is pure and simple a takeover of the health care system for political gain only, sold under the ruse of helping the uninsured. The "useful idiots" as described by Stalin/Lenin/Mark have done it again...thanks. Repeal and replace with a real, not convoluted, private system.

OP Resident  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 5:37 PM

Isn't that a line from "West Side Story"?

Another OP resident from Oak Park  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 5:24 PM

Health care reform includes taking personal responsibility by exercising and eating right, etc. We should do all we can to stay out of the pharma-surgical system. (By the way, that Jim Coughlin guy thinks he's pretty witty and bright).

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 5:05 PM


Here we Go again.....  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 4:11 PM

Nike.....Health Care reform. Oh I get it.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 4:03 PM


Here we Go again.....  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 4:00 PM

Your rants on everything not right with this Village or world are so amusing!! You seem to be an unhappy individual. Its always someone else. We are the weird ones.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 3:55 PM

Who are you? Why are you keeping tabs on when I post? How did I become a target for your petty zings? Am I being stalked?What exactly are you trying to accomplish? Do you resort to bullyng tactics to get your way? You've got a lot of explaining to do if you expect to engage in an adult debate/discussion with me. Follow the example of other folks who post comments and be respectful. I'll accept witness protection as a excuse for your stealth behavior. Otherwise, take a hike!

Here we Go again.....  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 3:39 PM

coughlin, is Competitive Foot your next target for your ad rant? Dont you have anything better to do with your time than to post here all day and night?

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 2:48 PM

I'll agree with most of your post, Ugly Side. But, Phil Knight does not get a pass. The milions paid to star athletes to endorse Nike products is made off the backs of people who earn pennies a day.

The Ugly Side  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 2:09 PM

The problem is not Phil is a society that cares about Tiger and creates a system where Jenn Aniston is worth $50M. Our healthcare solutions come from being healthier, eating better, excersizing, not wanting every drug or procedure to solve everything, being ok with dying with dignity and getting employement away from the cost of healthcare. Reduce costs to real job creators (not banks/investors) and take personal responsibilty for your own health.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 1:22 PM

Great stuff, Ugly Side. So true about Apple. How about Nike? They declare a pair of shoes is worth less than $1.00 when it enters our country. The same shoes are placed on the shelf at NikeTown with a $250 price tag. We should be calling out these corporate crooks expecially the ones that wrap themselves in the flag. Phil Knight thinks nothing about paying slave wages to workers in his third world factories but will pay millions to pro athletes like MJ, Tiger and the rest to promote his products

The Ugly Side  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 1:07 PM

@Jim...well alot to debate there. I would gladly support a 10% reduction to start in a Miltary budget. The other issues are more political ideology than sound economics. I still think you need to have responsibilty to pay for what you get. I also fight with this come not a single Apple product is produced in USA? Not one! Our costs to businesses are just not competitive and its a big world. I would like to think longer term than getting more $ now so more jobs leave.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 12:43 PM

Okay,Ugly Side. Let's see where the fed can find the money to cover the costs of single payer. I'm sure you know that the US spends more on defense than all of the other nations combined. We'd have to fight the military-industrial complex and lobbyists but it could be done. Next, let's end our corporate welfare system and tax cuts for the wealthy. How about removing the tax exempt status for religions? Real campaign finance reform would curtail the influence of special interests. Your thoughts

The Ugly Side  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 12:25 PM

@Jim Coughlin...ok...single payer...I am for that, but who pays? 50% of the country for everyone? That is the current imbalnce in income tax. Cut out the insurance companies and you save 20-25% of current costs at best. Still not my world you have to pay something for these benefits and supporters of single payer never get there. Until they do, moderates like myself will not support it.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 12:18 PM

Well, Ugly. My idea is that businesses would not providing health insurance for employees if we had open enrollment in Medicare. Health insurance companies need to go the way of the Pony Express.

The Ugly Side  

Posted: June 28th, 2011 11:55 AM

@Jim Coughlin...To be clear...are you saying that the bancrupting of local businesses is an acceptable outcome and that consolidation of large buinsess is ok all in the name of health care? There are better ways. Develop a healthier America...get healthcare away from employement and increase its tax deductability to the individual. Healthcare only came about as an employee benefit during the 50's when we had price controls. Should we really continue that system?

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 27th, 2011 8:44 PM

I recall that not a single Reoublican in the House or Senate voted "YES" for health care reform. Would Harriet Hausman please identify the courageous Republican she is asking us to support?

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: June 27th, 2011 5:34 PM

Health care is not a commodity.

The Ugly Side  

Posted: June 27th, 2011 4:42 PM

I am a manager for a small sized service company with 100 workers. In our industry insurance is not generally provided except to management. 80 people times $3000 each puts us out of business and our services go to larger national companies. There are no tax credits and if there are they are limited by income do to our S-Corp status. The Act gives big business and unions waivers and benefits and nothing for anyone else who did not contribute to Dems. Not a scare tatic...not talking points.


Posted: June 22nd, 2011 4:18 PM

Ms. Hausman: you state that "without reform, we taxpayers will have to assume that burden..." WHO exactly do you THINK is going to fund it if it's not repealed? Who do you think funds ALL public spending?????

MichaelO from Oak Park  

Posted: June 22nd, 2011 12:49 PM

Ronnie, do you want to address the problems of health care or just scoff at the good will of others? Ps. Please give us an idea of the problems "CAUSED by gov't intrusion into the system".

Ronnie100 from Oak Park  

Posted: June 22nd, 2011 8:14 AM

Though Ms. Hausman's commitment to community service is long, well-documented, and admirable, her defense of the worst piece of legislation in US history reads like regurgitated DNC talking points. Most, if not all, of the items problems as a reason to defend the act were CAUSED by govt intrusion into the system. I don't expect to convince Harriet and other ACLU-types to see how this will quickly turn the US into Greece. Fortunately the good sense of normal folks will help repeal this nonsense.

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