22nd District Candidates on Health Issues
Prior to the election, California Healthline is profiling the health care views of candidates in some of the state's key races. Today, CHL examines the race for California's 22nd congressional district (San Luis Obispo/Santa Barbara counties) between incumbent Rep. Lois Capps (D) and challenger Mike Stoker (R).
Prescription drug coverage. Stoker opposes pharmaceutical price controls "under any circumstances" and supports Rep. Bill Thomas' (R-Calif.) proposal, H.R. 4680, that would allow Medicare beneficiaries who are enrolled in Part B to obtain qualified prescription drug coverage through Part D. Capps suggests "including voluntary prescription drug coverage in Medicare, paid for by a combination of surplus funds and premiums paid by seniors";
Medicare reform. Stoker believes that "in-home care should be encouraged through [Medicare] reimbursement formulas." He also advocates "vigorou[s] investigat[ion]" and "full ... prosecution" of Medicare and Medi-Cal fraud. Like Stoker, Capps wants to "crack down on waste in the system." She also supports "bringing more managed care options to seniors" to help control costs;
Patients' bill of rights. Capps supports the House-passed Norwood-Dingell patients' bill of rights that "would curb abuses in managed care" by "put[ting] an end to gag rules on health care providers, ensur[ing] access to specialists and hold[ing] plans accountable for the decisions they make." Stoker's position on the issue was not available;
- The uninsured. Stoker proposes an incentive package of "greater tax credits, deductions and benefits to employers who provide health care to their employees" as well as tax credits for long term care. Stoker also supports the use of medical savings accounts. Capps advocates expanding CHIP to allow parents of eligible children to enroll. She also supports allowing people ages 55-65 to "buy into Medicare," making insurance for the self-employed 100%-deductible "immediately" and "instituting tax credits for the purchase of health insurance."
For more information on Stoker, visit his Web site at www.electmike.com. For more information on Capps, visit her Web site at http://www.house.gov/capps/. For complete Election 2000 information, go to HealthCounts 2000. HealthCounts 2000 is a partnership between the California HealthCare Foundation, KVIE-TV's California CapitolWeek, the Sacramento Bee, the California Journal and La Opinion designed to provide information about health care issues that are playing a role in this year's election.
This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.