Health Reform A Bipartisan View

Health Reform A Bipartisan View - P e r s p e c t i v e : R...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Perspective Health Reform: A Bipartisan View The Wyden-Bennett health reform bill offers the incoming Obama administration an opportunity for success where others have failed. by Jim Cooper and Michael Castle ABSTRACT: This optimistic assessment of the prospects for health reform from senior Democratic and Republican congressmen spells out several reasons why reform can be achieved early in the first year of the Obama administration. Political and policy factors sug- gest that President-elect Barack Obama is in a much better position than his predecessors to achieve comprehensive health reform, including universal coverage. The Obama admin- istration will have to overcome numerous obstacles and resistance to enact reform. Still, af- ter decades of frustration and disappointment, policymakers should set aside their differ- ences and enable the United States to join the ranks of developed nations by making sure every American has health insurance. [ Health Affairs 28, no. 2 (2009): w169–w172 (pub- lished online 16 January 2009; 10.1377/hlthaff.28.2.w169)] T oday’s estimated forty-six million uninsured Americans could soon rise to fifty million or more amid the cur- rent recession. They and their families need help now. Virtually everyone feels insecure about the crumbling U.S. health insurance system, as more and more employers drop coverage. It’s time to act. Reforming the $2.4 trillion U.S. medical sector will be very difficult, but the task is manageable. It will also be easier than cynics think. For starters, the Obama team may well provetohavemanagedthebestWhiteHouse transition in modern history. President-elect Barack Obama has made good first steps to as- semble teams of talented individuals to carry out his health reform agenda. Former Sen. Tom Daschle at the Department of Health and Hu- man Services and Peter Orszag at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) are ideal members of Obama’s health care team, because they are politically and technically adept. They have already learned from earlier Democratic and Republican mistakes and are unlikely to repeat these errors. They also know that mak- ing good on Obama’s campaign pledge to in- sure every American is the most visible and popular thing that the White House could do, if handled correctly. President-elect Obama’s best opportunity to deliver on his promise of universal coverage will come during his first six months in office. Presidents are strongest during their honey- moons, which are sometimes cruelly short. Very soon after Inauguration Day, the many problems that Obama inherited from past ad- ministrations will be seen as his own. On the other hand, if voters see their government pro- ducing real results shortly after the president and the new Congress take office, that fact alone might prolong the honeymoon and shore up Obama’s supply of political capital.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 02/11/2012 for the course BUSINESS 345 taught by Professor Roselli during the Spring '10 term at Berea.

Page1 / 5

Health Reform A Bipartisan View - P e r s p e c t i v e : R...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online