I am several days late on posting this, but the House healthcare bill has been unveiled and, in my humble opinion, it is a really good one! If you don’t want to read the whole bill (and at a 1,990 pages I can’t blame you) the Education and Labor Committee has posted a really good summary
Some key things that I like:
1. You can keep your plan, but there will be increased competition from an entity focused on care over profits. With this increased competition we can have confidence that healthcare decisions will be made by doctors and not insurance companies.
2. People can not be dropped because they are sick, are using ‘too much’ medical care or have pre-existing conditions
3. There is a mandate to be covered and penalties if you aren’t
4. Simplification of documentation for providers and patients
5. It will, according to the CBO, REDUCE the deficit over the next 10 years
6. Preventative care and wellness will be covered by all plans and companies
7. Caps out-of-pocket expenses to prevent medically-induced bankrupcy
Very likely no amendments will be allowed when the bill comes to the full house for a vote. Doing this will prevent an amendment (being pushed by Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI) ) which would prevent any government money from being spent on abortions. No way Pelosi allows this bill to be tainted with that and risk losing the liberal wing of the party.
Overall, this is a very good bill and I am looking forward to having it rapidly move through conference, being reconciled with the Senate bill and getting to Obama’s desk.