6 Steps to Reform Health Care Now: Kennedy

Senator lists needed steps for system overhaul
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted May 4, 2009 10:45 AM CDT
Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., listens as President Barack Obama speaks at the White House Forum on Health Reform in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, March 5, 2009.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – This is the year to end an “American tragedy” and overhaul health care, Sen. Ted Kennedy writes in Politico. The Census Bureau said last year that 46 million Americans had no health insurance--and the economic crisis has added another 4 million to the ranks of the uninsured. It’s time to take advantage of a consensus among US leaders that reform is needed, the senator writes, offering 6 necessary steps.

  1. Create an “affordable path” to coverage for all Americans. This will require, insurers to end medical underwriting, among other “real changes.”
  2. Expand the availability of good care: we may have the world’s best, but mainly the wealthy are getting it.
  3. Tackle illness prevention.
  4. Boost support for people with disabilities.
  5. Step up the battle against “fraud and abuse” in the system.
  6. Find an “acceptable path to pay for these reforms,” meaning “shared responsibility and sacrifice.”