Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Obama Likes Four GOP Ideas on Health Care

TPM reports. I'll summarize and comment.

1. Engage medical professionals to conduct random undercover investigations of health care providers that receive reimbursements from Medicare, Medicaid, and other Federal programs.

Well, I'm all for rooting out fraud and waste in these entitlement programs. But let's turn health-care providers, like doctors who through the AMA supported Obama's plan with a public option, into the bad guys. They make a lot of money, they have country club memberships and drive fancy cars and send their kids to private schools, so that's at least politically expedient and sufficiently populist.

2. Provide $73 million to states to explore options to solve medical malpractice disputes.

Doctors are bad when it comes to Medicare fraud, but let's throw them a bone on "tort reform." This oughta work, huh?

3. Increasing Medicaid reimbursements.

So while we're rooting out Medicaid fraud and waste, let's pay doctors more on Medicaid. Sounds completely logical, don't it?

4. Expand Health Savings Accounts.

Pre-tax dollars that allow consumers to meet high deductibles and co-pays while saving them a few bucks on their taxes. Generous!

If you ask me, these are bones Obama can afford to throw to the GOP that will ensure bipartisanship, even though these changes will likely have little effect on the benefits offered under the plan. Let's see if the Republican leadership goes for it.

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