The Impact of the 2010 Elections on U.S. Healthcare Reform

Summary

Implementation of the new health care reform law will slow down—and some pieces may disappear altogether—now that Republicans control the U.S. House of Representatives, according to a panel of health policy experts who spoke at The Forum at Harvard School of Public Health on November 5, 2010, following the 2010 elections.

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Presented in Collaboration with Reuters

Background Articles

Image Credit: Flag: iStockphoto.com/geopaul; Capitol Building: iStockphoto.com/slowgogo

  • Miles Zaremski

    This forum took place before Reuters (which collaborated in this forum) reported on November 10 that nearly 59 million Americans lack health insurance. [http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6A905U20101110] This comes from the CDC. This figure is up from the 30+ million citizens used to fashion the 2010 bill. But what I found even more disheartening from the panel participants is that what to do about health care reform come 2011–if you will, the discussion became “jelloesque”—a lot of wiggling and no real movement. The health reform bill should be strengthened, not decapitated. But the lynchpin for any movement going forward should be, just what is health care in this country? No, I know it means to be free of sickness or illness if possible. What I mean is that health care should be viewed as a right for all Americans. If this is the basic premise, then how do we ensure it? The 2010 bill addresses only the accessibility side of the ledger, not the affordability side. To address the latter means to lower prices to obtain health care, notably through insurance policies. Lowering the cost for these policies means to inject more competition to the private markets–like a public option or something comparable.