Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Richardson Health Care Plan Detailed in Quad City Times

Governor Richardson outlined some details of his health care plan in a column in this morning's Quad City Times.

My plan is a common-sense approach that builds upon existing systems, offers well-established coverage options, and provides Americans with choices of affordable care:

1. Working families and small businesses will be able to purchase the same coverage available to the president and members of Congress.

2. We will allow Americans 55 to 64 to buy in to Medicare.

3. We will strengthen the Veterans Administration and create a Heroes Health Card to provide veterans with high-quality care, without bureaucratic hassles.

4. We will enable dependent young adults to remain on their parents’ plans until the age of 25, reducing their costs and increasing coverage.

5. Families who want to keep their current health insurance will have the freedom to do so.

6. Insurance companies will no longer be able to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions.

My plan also keeps coverage affordable:

-- A sliding scale tax credit will help families obtain coverage.

-- My plan will cap interest charges on personal credit card medical debt.

-- As with auto insurance, all Americans will be required to have health coverage and employers will pay their fair share of employee health-care costs.

-- We will control costs by streamlining administration, implementing electronic medical records and simplifying hospital regulation.

-- We will also emphasize preventive care and healthier lifestyle choices. In my state we improved the rate of fully immunized children, took junk food out of schools and put physical education back in. Investments in preventive care will create a healthier America and save billions of dollars.

I'll post more on the Richardson health care plan later, as more details emerge.

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