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If Washington wants health care reform with bipartisan support, experts say consider what former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney accomplished as governor in Democratic Massachusetts.
"You don't have to have a public option," Romney said. "You don't have to have the government getting into the insurance business to make it work."
Three years after enacting its own version of reform, Massachusetts now has near-universal coverage.
Taxpayer watchdogs say it's affordable.
"There is this widespread assumption, that is treated as fact, that it's breaking the bank in Massachusetts ... it's not breaking the bank at all." said Michael Widmer of Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation.
And health care experts say it's popular.
"Seven in 10 people in the state support the program, and no more than one in 10 would repeal it." said Robert Blendon with the Harvard University School of Public Health.
Minimum benefits, such as preventive care, mental health care and hospitalization
A ban on gender discrimination
Limits on total out-of-pocket costs
A prohibition on pre-existing conditions as a qualifier for health coverage
No medical underwriting, so insurers can't ask an individual about his or her health status in order to determine coverage
Limits on age restrictions, which means what is charged for an older individual cannot be more than double what is charged the youngest.
Originally posted by octotom
I supported Romney last year too, but, from what I've heard, the Massachusetts healthcare system thing isn't doing too well. I heard one example on the radio where, a woman needed to get a physical for her son, so he could play sports at school. The doctor said that she'd have to wait for something like two months in order to get it. The reason was because, due to the new Massachusetts universal healthcare, there were people going to the doctor now for every single little thing that was wrong with them, even if it was something very minor. The woman had to take her son to a neighboring state to get the physical.
Granted, that may not be Romney's fault, but the doing of the government that came in after he'd left office.
Why can't we just make healthcare free and say to hell with the insurance companies?
The woman had to take her son to a neighboring state to get the physical.