Health Care Front Of Mind For New Hampshire Voters As First-In-Nation Primary Commences
"I don’t think I’ve been at a town hall meeting . . . where health care hasn’t come up on the part of the people," says Ned Helms, a longtime Democratic activist in New Hampshire. The state is holding its primary today, and the candidates are pushing to get their health care messages out.
The Washington Post:
New Hampshire Voters Push Democratic Candidates On Health Care
In a union hall a mile from New Hampshire's gold-domed statehouse, Joe Biden was working a rope line, taking selfies, clapping voters on the shoulder, when a woman with a red plaid dress and a message got her turn. “Health care is so important,” Sheila Zakre told the former vice president running for the Democratic presidential nomination. A 61-year-old disability rights lawyer who works on her own, Zakre is part of the insured middle class. Still, she and her husband, Bob Sanders, are fighting an unexpected $2,400 hospital bill after a facility fee was tacked on for a scan in a doctor’s office. (Goldstein, 2/10)
The Wall Street Journal:
Democrats Make Last Pitches In New Hampshire As Iowa Fight Continues
Mr. Buttigieg, appearing during a snowstorm in the northern college town of Plymouth, was critical of his rival. “We cannot risk alienating Americans at this critical moment, and that’s where I part ways with my friend, Sen. Sanders,” Mr. Buttigieg said before finding fault with the Vermont senator’s Medicare for All plan. He said that health-insurance proposal was too expensive, would require higher taxes on the middle class and would be unfair to people who are happy with their private insurance. (Jamerson and Day, 2/10)
Doctors Group Breaks From Health Care Industry With Support For 'Medicare For All'
But not the American College of Physicians (ACP). That group made waves last month when it broke with other leading health players to endorse Medicare for All, along with an optional government plan, as a way to get to universal coverage. The move by the ACP, which represents internal medicine doctors who are often a patient’s primary care physician, is a sign of changing attitudes among doctors. “A lot of this is driven from the grassroots membership,” Bob Doherty, senior vice president of governmental affairs and public policy for the ACP, said in an interview last week in the group’s Washington office. “Physicians are increasingly frustrated with paperwork,” he said, which stems in part from having multiple insurers all with different rules and documentation requirements. One possible solution is to have just a single payer: the government. (Sullivan, 2/11)
In other health care news —
In Reelection Bid, A GOP Lawmaker Campaigns On Pelosi’s Drug Pricing Bill
In the months before House Democrats passed their aggressive drug negotiation bill, GOP lawmakers derisively labeled it the “Fewer Cures Act,” and a conservative advocacy group spent millions on advertisements likening the legislation to a “socialist takeover of the health care system.” But in Washington state, one Republican lawmaker is effectively campaigning for reelection on her support for the bill. “Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler puts seniors ahead of drug companies,” according to mailing material that the GOP congresswoman’s office recently sent to constituents, which touts her support for the Democrats’ plan. “Jaime helped advance H.R. 3.” (Facher, 2/11)