Business Group Recommends Health Reform Principles
The National Federation of Independent Business on Wednesday unveiled 10 principles to overhaul the health care system, CQ HealthBeat reports.
The principles -- which were developed after consultation with health experts from across the political spectrum -- include universal and affordable health care, NFIB President Todd Stottlemyer said (Straus, CQ HealthBeat, 12/12). However, the group said it opposes the creation of a single-payer system, instead favoring private insurance with a government safety net to help the neediest U.S. residents obtain coverage.
The group also expressed its opposition to proposals that require businesses to provide insurance for employees or pay into a fund for the uninsured. NFIB in a statement said that a "health care system built on employer mandates or on pay-or-play taxes is unacceptable." Susan Eckerly, a vice president for NFIB, said that business mandates "are the No. 1 job killer for the small-business owner" (Freudenheim, New York Times, 12/13).
The group believes that portability in health insurance is an important reform to health care. Potential entrepreneurs might not be able to launch a business if they feel tied to a job because of the health insurance, NFIB spokesperson Stephanie Cathcart said.
In addition, the group said that the U.S. health care system should be competitive, transparent, efficient, unbiased and evidence-based. NFIB added that any reform to the current system should be implemented at a pace that gives small businesses adequate time to adjust. Cathcart said, "We're asking (presidential) candidates and members of Congress to use these principles as a starting point" (CQ HealthBeat, 12/12).