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Mitt Romney on Health Care

A look at the GOP nominee's record in Massachusetts and on the presidential campaign trail

"The reason health care is so expensive … is not just because of insurance, it's because of the cost of providing care. And one reason for that is the person who receives care in America generally doesn't care how much it costs, because once they've paid their deductible, it's free. And the provider, the more they do, the more they get paid … And so what we have to do is make sure that individuals have a concern and care about how much something costs. And for that to happen [we need] health savings accounts. Give people a stake in what the cost of insurance is going to be, what the cost of it is going to be. Co-insurance, where people pay a share of the bill, that makes a difference." – Romney, Tampa Tea Party Debate, Sept. 12, 2011.

On Health Reform Philosophy, Romney:

  • Says he would allow states to opt out of the federal health law and encourage Congress to repeal it.
  • Believes that "each state should be able to fashion their own program for the specific needs of their distinct citizens," and that states are the "laboratories of democracy."
  • Maintains that "market dynamics" such as increased competition, provider performance ratings, cost comparisons for procedures, co-insurance and lowering the number of uninsured will improve the health care delivery system.
  • Endorses efforts to find an alternative to the fee-for-service payment model.

"I want people to be able to own their own insurance, if they wish to. And to buy it for themselves and perhaps keep it the rest of their lives and to choose among different policies offered from companies across the nation," he said. "That means the insurance company will have an incentive to keep you healthy. It also means, if you don’t like what they do, you can fire them."  –- Nashua, New Hampshire, Jan. 9, 2012

On Medicaid, Romney:

  • Opposes the health law's expansion of Medicaid coverage to as many as 17 million people.
  • Supports Medicaid block grants to allow states to use capped federal contributions to run the program with more flexibility.
  • Favors reducing the amount of money the federal government spends on Medicaid.

Also of interest: Campaign civility IS possible.

You may also like: Health insurance coverage for 50- to 64-year-olds.

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