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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: US PIRG
Larry McNeely, Health Care Advocate
Office: 202-546-9707 x303
Mike Russo, Attorney, Health Care Advocate, CALPIRG
Health Care Reform Can Save Three Trillion Dollars
WASHINGTON - October 1 - As the Senate Finance Committee wrestles with its health reform bill, a report re-released today finds that a strong reform package could save the American economy $3 trillion dollars.
The $3 Trillion Question: What Health Care Reform Can Save For Families, Businesses and Taxpayers from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group provides state-by-state estimates for how much various strong health reform measures can save small businesses, family and government.
"Congress might wrangle over where to find the $90 billion a year needed to fix our health care system," explained U.S. PIRG Health Care Advocate Larry McNeely. "But the economic benefits of reform are three times larger than the cost of any plan before Congress. If they fail to pass health reform, they'll be hanging America's families and businesses out to dry."
The report also endorses a proposal, backed by the White House and included in the Finance Committee bill, that would bring down costs and sidestep political gridlock by empowering a new independent Medicare Commission made up of doctors and health care experts to adopt the reforms that can incentivize the highest-quality, most efficient care.
"Over the past decade, Congress has sat on the sidelines while premiums have doubled," said Michael Russo, CALPIRG Health Care advocate and author of the report. "We know how to get skyrocketing costs under control - now it's time for Congress to step up and pass the strong cost-saving policies that our country needs."
Among the potential savings identified in the report:
- Streamlining health care billing and cutting red tape can reduce $350 billion of waste.
- Adoption of health information technology and electronic medical records can save $180 billion.
- Investing in unbiased research into the best treatments, drugs, and devices can save $480 billion.
- Creating a public health insurance option to compete on a level playing field with private insurers can reduce national costs by $230 billion or more.