Pan o Palo

I Get An Email
September 3, 2009, 12:20 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

From my Congresscritter, Rep. Betty McCollum:

Dear Andy:

I strongly support President Obama’s goal of reforming health care with a focus on reducing cost, increasing access, and ensuring quality care for all Americans.  The current system is not sustainable for our families, businesses, taxpayers, or the providers of health care.  Almost 50 million Americans are uninsured and are too often left to access care in the emergency room where it is too expensive and too late.  Millions more are under-insured and just one pink-slip away from losing their health insurance.

It’s time to build a health care system focused on outcomes for patients rather than profits for the health care industry.  To achieve this goal, access to comprehensive health insurance and basic health care must be expanded.  Preventative services and public health must become priority investments.  All of America‘s children must be covered.  Prescription drugs should be affordable.  No one should be denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions.  And medical decisions should be made by patients and doctors – not insurance companiesIn addition, I strongly support the creation of a public insurance option that will expand the opportunity for coverage and create competition in the marketplace to keep premium costs down and ensure quality care.

We can do all of these things in comprehensive health care reform legislation.  However, any bill passed by Congress and signed by President Obama must move all 50 states forward. In other words – I want a bill in which no state is left behind – and that means Minnesota. Minnesota is not perfect, and I want to see even greater progress here at home, but when compared to many other places across the U.S. we are doing a good job. Minnesota‘s successes must not only be acknowledged, they should be rewarded.

The flawed and discriminatory formula that currently funds Medicare penalizes and discourages Minnesota taxpayers and patients, doctors, hospitals, counties and the entire health care sector that is providing high quality, low cost care.  If this flawed Medicare reimbursement formula is extended as the basis of a public insurance option, the harm to Minnesota would be severe and totally unacceptable.

In Congress, I have been outspoken about Minnesota‘s unfair treatment with the leaders of the Democratic Caucus and Chairmen Waxman, Rangel and Miller who are writing the bill.  To address the flawed Medicare formula, I have worked to build and lead a coalition of Members from states across the country to create a lasting solution to the inequities in Medicare payments.  On July 24, I was part of a negotiating team that reached an agreement with House leaders to address this problem in the America‘s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009 (H.R. 3200).  The provisions we added to the bill ensure more equitable Medicare reimbursements for states such as Minnesota and promote high quality, cost-effective, and evidence-based health care for all Americans. To read the compromise and view background on health care reform, I encourage you to visit my website:

Health care reform is a moral and economic imperative, and will continue to be a priority for me in the 111th Congress.


Betty McCollum
Member of Congress

Educate.  Agitate.  Organize.  Thank you, Rep. McCollum.