HEALTH REFORM: Remains An Issue For GOP Candidate In 44th District Special Election
Dr. John Overman, a physician seeking to complete the late Rep. Sonny Bono's (R-44) term in Congress, favors managed care reforms and steps to protect the Medicare program's solvency. In a Hemet News profile, the GOP candidate said persons in managed care plans "have few choices for doctors, limited or no access to specialists and generally no choice about where to get hospital care." Overman also said doctors "are frustrated at having their recommendations stymied by managed care bureaucrats." "We have a bureaucratic system that makes health care very expensive. If I want to order treatment for a patient, I should be able to do that quickly," Overman said. He promised to push for mandatory catastrophic health care coverage, paid for by individuals, but financed with a targeted tax break. Noting that "Medicare and Social Security are nearing bankruptcy," Overman said he would ensure the programs' solvency by "invest[ing] the money for the programs into stocks and bonds."
With respect to abortion, Overman said he favors some restrictions, but would not want to make the procedure illegal. "I would limit abortion to those cases where compassion needs to be applied." He "suggested some kind of screening to ensure that women don't get abortions unless it is the only solution" (Schweizer, 3/30). The 44th District special election will be held April 7. If none of the six candidates in the race receives 50% or more of the total vote, a runoff will be held June 2.