Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Hump Day Headlines

The Wall St. Journal lays out the GOP health care agenda. Why is it all about repeal? What do they plan to do instead? How will the anti-reform Dems vote? What do we lose if we repeal the reform bill? (Here's a fact sheet on that from the feds). The Dems point out that undoing the reforms without fixing the status quo will break the bank, and that some of the reforms already are helping people. And the GOP exempts health care from their rule that all legislation must be paid for -- they know repeal will cost billions and they haven't figured out how to pay for it, so they just exempted it! And so the battle lines are drawn.

And for a hint of humor, Senator Schumer renews the demand that anti-reformers decline taking federal health insurance benefits as they take their seats in the new Congress.

One thing we do know. There are no death panels. There never were. But because of all the misinformation and paranoia, the feds are removing end of life counseling from what's covered in annual free physical exams under Medicare. Happy now?

Did you really need that defibrillator? Apparently, about 20% of people who have one didn't need it, according to this study. And even worse, that can cause a real health threat. Here's more.

And that's it for today. For better or worse, the fight over reform is back on the front burner. Whatever you believe about the law, you have to agree that this is round two (or more if you go back historically to the many attempts to fix this) of an incredibly important fight that will affect us all. Jennifer

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