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LETTER: Health care myths

Commentary • Mar 23, 2010 at 6:24 PM

The notion that the health care reform bill is a "government takeover" of health care is ridiculous. Political commentators and even members of Congress have been referring to the bill as just that: a government takeover. This simply is not true. There is no single-payer system or public option in the bill. The government is not coming to take over the hospitals or force people to change what doctor they wish to see. Also, there are no death panels in the bill.

This bill is meant to bring heavier regulation to insurance companies. There will be a mandate that everyone has health insurance, much like it is required that people with a car have car insurance. If there is no mandate, people would have no reason to buy health insurance until they were ill. Although there is no requirement for employers to provide health insurance to their employees, large employers will be subject to fines if they do not.

Obviously, there is more to the bill than this. I encourage people to view the bill at the Opencongress Web site. I did not read the entire thing and would not expect anyone to do so, but a glance at it would not hurt. Politifact's Web site also has some interesting pros and cons about the bill. Paraphrasing former Senator Moynihan, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts. In favor of this bill or not, "government takeover" is simply inaccurate.

Dominic Wells


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