Editorial Series Addresses Governor’s Health Care Reform Proposal
The Orange County Register last week published five editorials as part of a series called "California Health Care at a Crossroads," which addresses Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's (R) health care reform proposals. Summaries of the five editorials are below.
- Dec. 26: "California is at a crossroads that will dictate the quality and cost of health care for millions of residents for decades to come," the editorial states. Schwarzenegger should "at the least hold the line against further government regulation and micromanagement of health care," according to the editorial. "California's leaders are weighing decisions that could disastrously accelerate that trend" of an "oppressive, cumbersome government," it says (Orange County Register, 12/26/06).
- Dec. 27: The editorial recommends "holding the line against costly new mandates that would force insurance companies to add more types of coverage, which would increase, rather than cut, costs." It adds that "encouraging a free market" for health care would be favorable to being "restricted to one-size-fits-all, bloated benefit packages" (Orange County Register, 12/27/06).
- Dec. 28: The Register recommends that Schwarzenegger "scrap plans" for expanding health care clinics in public schools and calls for him to instead "encourage private industry to bring routine medical care as close as the nearest CVS, Wal-Mart or Target store." The editorial concludes that "California should jump on this private-sector bandwagon" (Orange County Register, 12/28/06).
- Dec. 29: The Register details "what not to do to fix the health care system," highlighting seven "unworthy" solutions. The editorial states that the governor should "substitute personal choices and free-market alternatives" rather than "feed the insatiable appetite of the health care monster with new taxes, new costly mandates or by increasing reliance on third-party payers, especially the government" (Orange County Register, 12/29/06).
- Jan. 2: Gov. Schwarzenegger should "recognize that the self-destructive economics of health care is rooted in its encouragement of third parties to pay providers for services delivered to someone else," a Register editorial states. In its final installment of the editorial series, the Register highlights eight strategies that it says the governor should include in his health care reform proposal, including permitting insurers to offer "low-cost, bare-bones coverage with high deductibles" to help lower the cost of insurance coverage and "reduce government health care spending." The editorial states that implementing its eight recommendations would help "contain costs and reduce the number of uninsured substantially" (Orange County Register, 1/2).