Feingold statement on Baucus health care proposal

Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold issued a statement on the health care reform proposal submitted by Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT):

“My goals for health care reform include a strong public option, long-term care reform and reform of the Medicare reimbursement system that has disadvantaged Wisconsin for far too long. I am disappointed that the Finance Committee bill, as written, comes up short on all three fronts. I hope my colleagues on the Finance Committee will change the bill to ensure it is not just health care reform in name only.”

Instead of offering a public health care option, the bill submitted by Sen. Baucus would instead set up Web-based insurance exchanges that would standardize health plan premiums and coverage information. Consumers would also get access to a choice of nonprofit, “consumer-owned and oriented plans,” also known as co-ops.

While Sen. Baucus’ reform proposal is certainly a step in the right direction when it comes to health care reform, Sen. Feingold is right – it doesn’t go nearly far enough to address Medicare reimbursement reform, and its failure to provide a public option will surely be a sticking point among Congressional progressives.


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