America has the highest quality medical care in the world, but we must take measures to reduce costs and make access to health insurance more affordable for everyone. Unfortunately, the 2010 health care reform law failed to address the fundamental causes of high health care costs, while simultaneously creating a host of new problems that threaten to diminish the quality of medical care Americans have now. Washington insiders like my opponent, Betty Sutton, are on a mission to do to the healthcare industry what they did to the auto industry and the financial sector through a complete government takeover. Their plan will kill jobs, increase taxes on small businesses and force millions of Americans from their current healthcare plan. The last thing Americans need is Washington politicians standing in between them and their doctor.
The key to making health care more affordable lies with increasing competition and eliminating unnecessary overhead costs on the system, not with a new government takeover of the healthcare system.
Purchasing Across State Lines
In order to reduce health care costs we must increase competition. Any viable health care reform legislation must afford consumers the ability to purchase insurance across state lines, which will drastically expand competition in the marketplace and drive costs down. There are approximately 1,300 health care providers in the United States, but due to the prohibition on purchasing insurance across state lines, one or two providers often consume 70-80% of the market share in some states. Allowing all 1,300 providers to compete for business nationwide would blow open competition and would make health care far more affordable for all Americans.
America's health care system is plagued by a constant stream of frivolous lawsuits that result in an unnecessary inflation of health care costs. Doctors are being force to combat impending lawsuits in two ways, both of which drive up costs on the system, costs that are then passed on to patients.
Malpractice Insurance Premiums: Tort reform would help curb the number of junk lawsuits filed against doctors, which would in turn lower the cost of malpractice premiums and reduce overhead costs on hospitals.
Defensive Medicine: As a result of frivolous lawsuits, many doctors are forced to engage in defensive medicine, a practice that leads doctors to order needless tests or procedures to protect themselves against future lawsuits. A 2008 survey found that more than 80% of doctors in some states practice defensive medicine and that 25% of all imaging tests were ordered for defensive purposes. Tort reform would help eliminate the need for the practice of defensive medicine and would reduce health care costs by as much as $200 billion a year.
The Sutton Record
GUTTED MEDICARE BY $500 BILLION
In 2010, Betty Sutton voted in favor of the President's Health Care Bill. The bill gutted $500 billion from Medicare, which is now rapidly free-falling into insolvency. According to the Medicare Trustee's report in 2011, Medicare will collapse into insolvency in as little as 9 years from now.
SUPPORTED THE FAR LEFT "PUBLIC OPTION"
Not only did Betty Sutton vote for the job crushing 2010 health care bill, she went one step further and fought for a complete government takeover of health care. Betty Sutton then opposed the budget plan put forth to protect and preserve Medicare—instead opting to do nothing and simply let Medicare disappear into bankruptcy.
The Vote to Repeal the Job-Killing Health Care Bill: