On health care reform, the American people are too often offered two
extremes -- government-run health care with higher taxes or letting the
insurance companies operate without rules. President Obama and Vice
President Biden believe both of these extremes are wrong, and that’s
why they’ve proposed a plan that strengthens employer coverage, makes
insurance companies accountable and ensures patient choice of doctor
and care without government interference.
The Obama-Biden plan provides affordable, accessible health care for
all Americans, builds on the existing health care system, and uses
existing providers, doctors, and plans. Under the Obama-Biden plan,
patients will be able to make health care decisions with their doctors,
instead of being blocked by insurance company bureaucrats.
Under the plan, if you like your current health insurance, nothing
changes, except your costs will go down by as much as $2,500 per year.
If you don’t have health insurance, you will have a choice of new,
affordable health insurance options.
Make Health Insurance Work for People and Businesses -- Not Just Insurance and Drug Companies.
- Require insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions so all
Americans regardless of their health status or history can get
comprehensive benefits at fair and stable premiums.
- Create a new Small Business Health Tax Credit to help small businesses provide affordable health insurance to their employees.
- Lower costs for businesses by covering a portion of the
catastrophic health costs they pay in return for lower premiums for
- Prevent insurers from overcharging doctors for their malpractice
insurance and invest in proven strategies to reduce preventable medical
- Make employer contributions more fair by requiring large employers
that do not offer coverage or make a meaningful contribution to the
cost of quality health coverage for their employees to contribute a
percentage of payroll toward the costs of their employees' health care.
- Establish a National Health Insurance Exchange with a range of
private insurance options as well as a new public plan based on
benefits available to members of Congress that will allow individuals
and small businesses to buy affordable health coverage.
- Ensure everyone who needs it will receive a tax credit for their premiums.
Reduce Costs and Save a Typical American Family up to $2,500 as reforms phase in:
- Lower drug costs by allowing the importation of safe medicines from
other developed countries, increasing the use of generic drugs in
public programs, and taking on drug companies that block cheaper
generic medicines from the market.
- Require hospitals to collect and report health care cost and quality data.
- Reduce the costs of catastrophic illnesses for employers and their employees.
- Reform the insurance market to increase competition by taking on
anticompetitive activity that drives up prices without improving
quality of care.
The Obama-Biden plan will promote public health. It
will require coverage of preventive services, including cancer
screenings, and increase state and local preparedness for terrorist
attacks and natural disasters.
A Commitment to Fiscal Responsibility: Barack Obama
will pay for his $50 - $65 billion health care reform effort by rolling
back the Bush tax cuts for Americans earning more than $250,000 per
year and retaining the estate tax at its 2009 level.