All across the country citizens are rightly worried about the rising cost of health care in America. Over the past couple of decades, health insurance premiums have increased much faster than the general rate of inflation. But many politicians in Washington are pushing for a government-run healthcare system that does not make health care any cheaper, will push many people out of their private coverage, limits patient choice, restricts access to life-saving procedures, and puts government bureaucrats in charge of our health care.
Instead of giving the government more power, Pat believes the best way to lower the cost of health care is by giving choices and power to patients. One way to do that is to encourage the growth of personally owned and controlled health care. We can start by giving individuals who buy their own health insurance the same tax benefits that employers enjoy when they buy health insurance for their employees. This will make it much easier for millions of Americans to buy their own health insurance plan.
Second, we should also allow individuals and businesses to buy health insurance anywhere in the country. Currently, the law prohibits a worker in Pennsylvania from buying a health insurance plan from a neighboring state. Changing this law will give individuals access to a large array of health care options and will lower costs by forcing health insurance companies to compete with each other.
Third, Pat also believes we can lower costs dramatically by enacting comprehensive tort reform. Currently, runaway lawsuits force doctors to pay higher premiums and run up the cost of health care in this country. In addition, because of runaway lawsuits, doctors practice defensive medicine, driving up the cost of care further. In Pennsylvania, certain specialties even see doctors leaving en masse to avoid the outrageous costs forced upon them by a legal system run amok.
Fourth, we should allow small businesses and groups to join together to form association health plans to lower the cost of providing health care. We should also encourage a market for renewable health plans to help people with preexisting conditions keep their health insurance.
When Pat was in Congress he consistently voted for policies that would lower the cost of health care and give Americans more choices. We all deserve access to the world’s best health care. Pat knows this can only be accomplished by reforming the system in ways that give more control to patients and doctors - not to government and insurance