Hello America and newly elected Scott Brown,
Remember me, I'm the doctor with forty years experience in military, academic, research and private medicine who last summer offered the five bullet-point common sense solution to health care's ailments, with no new taxes and no addition at all to the national debt, and with the ability to provide care to everyone in the United States. Please see my original proposals in Steve Lopez's LA Times column of 8-12-09 and in the Huffington Post on 8-13-09.
With the stunning election of Scott Brown as the Republican Senator-elect of the former Ted Kennedy seat in Massachusetts, it's clear that the massive, bureaucratic, expensive Democratic health care bill is history, and even President Obama states let's "coalesce" on what all can agree upon.
As I've watched the health care debate unfold these past months, it has become clear that all parties have mentioned the five points I recommended, and they've been reported by legislators and pundits every Sunday since August. What hasn't been accepted by America is the 108 new government special interest and political pay-off agencies proposed to administer these five points.
The genius of Scott Brown's election is that he may be able to lead America to a few page bill to accomplish the effective five points, that all can accept, instead of 2074 pages that most have rejected.
Follow five simple steps:
1. Change the current 50 state patchwork of private insurance programs to a national clearing house of choice, to increase competition dramatically, and provide portability for working Americans.
2. Return health insurance companies to the pre-1984 Federal regulations that required 85% of collected premiums to actually go to health care.
3. Require all working citizens to purchase insurance to broaden the base and flatten the playing field, allowing the elimination of pre-existing clauses.
4. Enact meaningful federal tort reform, as already exists in eight states with huge success in decreasing medical costs.
5. Mandate the 159 urban medical schools, who receive federal grants, to first serve the hard core indigent and illegal aliens in their shadows, before engaging in empires of private practice. (Use the USC/LA County Hospital model)
This plan represents a simple solution to pursuing all the best aspects of choice, quality and access in our American medical system, without the need to add any new taxes or increasing national debt. I believe all Americans would "coalesce" around this plan to fulfill the access requirements for all citizens and residents of our wonderful country, this land of freedom and opportunity, the best hope of the world.
Let's listen to Scott Brown and the voters of Massachusetts.
Paul Toffel, M.D.