Politics marks the second anniversary of health-care reform

The health-care reform law that has come to define the first term of President Barack Obama is marking its second anniversary today, and as might be expected, the occasion is serving as fodder for political posturing from the two sides of the political aisle.

“Today, two years after we passed health care reform, more young adults have insurance, more seniors are saving money on their prescription drugs, and more Americans can rest easy knowing they won’t be dropped from their insurance plans if they get sick. The law has made a difference for millions of Americans, and over time, it will help give even more working and middle-class families the security they deserve,” President Obama said in a statement.

Former Virginia governor and Democratic National Committee chairman Tim Kaine lauded the reform for “putting patients, instead of insurance companies, in charge of their health care.”

‘Nearly 63,000 more young people in Virginia have health coverage, more than 800,000 Virginia seniors have received free preventive care, millions of small businesses are now eligible for tax credits, and 20 million American women have access to cancer screenings and contraception without co-pays. And we’ve put an end to the egregious abuses by insurance companies that denied coverage to children with preexisting conditions, charged women higher premiums for the same coverage, and dropped folks when they got sick,” Kaine said.

Kaine’s chief rival for the open U.S. Senate seat being contested in Virginia in November, former Republican governor George Allen, blasted the “government-run health-care law” that “gives Washington too much control and patients too little,” echoing a common GOP criticism.

“No Washington bureaucrat should get between patients and their doctors.  We need to trust the people – put them in charge with quality, affordable portable health care options like personalized Health Savings Accounts. I believe the solution to our health care system is not more government, it’s more freedom,” Allen said.

The Obama administration countered the expected Republican chorus of boos with the release of a report detailing, among other things, that 2.5 million more young adults have health insurance as a result of a reform provision allowing them to stay on their parents’ plan longer, and that the average Medicare recipient has saved an average of $635 on the cost of prescription drugs as a result of the reform law.


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