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You Control Your Healthcare, Not the Government

August 1, 2016
Weekly Columns
Since 2010, the health of America has been at the mercy of a flawed, disruptive system. The Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as "Obamacare," has created more problems than the solutions that it had promised. Too many Americans have suffered from skyrocketing healthcare costs - from rising premiums and deductibles, to outrageous hospital visit costs and home care costs. Moreover, the consequences of funding and logistics have been a nightmare for the American taxpayer. The Republican alternative is not a return to the pre-Obamacare status quo, but rather a patient centered, consumer friendly approach to providing affordable, quality health care to all Americans.
 
Without question, our healthcare system before Obamacare was bureaucratic and expensive.  Unfortunately, Obamacare has made it worse on both fronts. It severely reduces our ability to choose our health providers and creates expensive mandates. It has forced people to purchase expensive plans they did not want, and put the federal bureaucracy in charge of one of the most important aspects of a typical American family.
 
Over the past six years, the House has voted over 60 times to repeal various provisions of Obamacare, and to ultimately repeal Obamacare for good. As a part of those efforts, the Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee, of which I am Chairman, has taken firm steps to defund Obamacare. Moreover, Congressional Republicans have offered an alternative to create a superior reform to our healthcare system. The American people should have access to more choices, better treatments, the best doctors, and lower costs. Our nation thrives when we are given market-driven solutions.
 
The Republican plan allows protections for employer-based health insurance by capping the open-ended tax break and eliminating the erroneous “Cadillac tax.” Premiums won’t increase and every American of any age will have the flexibility to choose a plan that works for them. More importantly, our plan will preserve Medicaid and Medicare by updating outdated models, reducing costs, and allowing future generations to have the same benefits in the long run. Significantly, the plan will also ensure that research for finding cures is a top priority, and that the National Institutes of Health is robustly funded, something I am proud to support.
 
No one should ever have to worry that their insurance will be unfairly taken away or that they will be denied coverage due to a pre-existing condition. The number one priority of any healthcare reform should always be the patient. The defining question is simply this – who is in charge of your healthcare, the government or you? I believe in, and am fighting for, you.
 
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