Taking Positions: Some Docs, Businesses Cheer While Others Oppose Effort
As advocacy groups with a stake in health reform take positions in the health reform debate, their battle lines don't necessarily observe the boundaries of a given sector, industry or professional affiliation. "Business is far from unified in its lobbying efforts for health-care reform," McClatchy/Chicago Tribune reports. "The disparity dilutes its power and may contribute to a plan no faction wants -- or no plan at all."
Though everyone agrees cost control is key, other details, such as whether to include an employer mandate, a public health insurance plan, or end the employer-based health insurance system all together, are up in the air. "[W]hile some executives are letting the U.S. Chamber of Commerce or the National Federation of Independent Business express their views in Washington, others are saying those organizations don't speak for them" (Stafford, 7/20).
Meanwhile, the American College of Surgeons backed the House's version of the health care reform bill, following the lead of the American Medical Association, the Hill reports. "The backing of the physician lobby, which has opposed past reform efforts, would prove incredibly valuable to President Obama and his Democratic allies in their push to enact comprehensive healthcare reform this year." But The Hill also notes that "The house of medicine is far from unified in support of the House Democrats' bill..." Numerous state-based medical societies planned to oppose the overhaul with a letter to lawmakers this week, and the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and the Congress of Neurological Surgeons both announced their disapproval last week (Young, 7/17).