I believe that quality, affordable healthcare is a right for all Americans. I served for eight years as the Insurance Commissioner of California, and I know for a fact that the for-profit insurance industry will do what it can to maximize its profits at the expense of consumers. As your Congressman, my health care priorities are to:
- Keep the Affordable Care Act in place. Because of the Affordable Care Act, 30 million Americans have health insurance when they didn't before. The Affordable Care Act bans discrimination on pre-existing conditions. It allows children to stay on the health insurance plans of their parents until age 26. It bans charging women a higher premium for the same coverage. It expands Medicaid to cover more lower-income Americans. It has saved tens of thousands of lives by providing strong incentives against readmission of patients. And it has saved tens of thousands of lives by using market incentives to reduce hospital readmission rates. If the Affordable Care Act is repealed, all these benefits go away. We cannot go back to the era where people were unable to get coverage because of pre-existing conditions.
- Defend Medicare. There are plans working their way through Congress that would end the guarantee of Medicare as we know it and replace it with a voucher system for seniors to buy their own private insurance. I will fight this every step of the way. Medicare is the most efficient health care program in the United States, and will do everything I can to turn it into a coupon.
- Expand Medicare's benefits. Right now, Medicare doesn't cover eye lenses, dental care, or hearing aids. What sense does that make? Seniors have ears, eyes and teeth. I have continually co-sponsored legislation that will expand Medicare to cover these vital services.
For more information concerning my work and views on Health Care issues, please contact my Washington, DC office. I look forward to your feedback. Thank you.
--Congressman John Garamendi
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