- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 23, 2009

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Americans are counting on Congress to pass legislation this year that will improve our health care system, and H.R. 3200 is an important starting point (“Destroying private health insurance,” Opinion, Monday). As the bill moves through the legislative process, the American Medical Association will stay engaged to ensure the final bill will benefit patients and physicians.

This year, the AMA is committed to reform that provides all Americans with affordable and high-quality health care. The House bill helps achieve this by extending health insurance coverage to nearly all Americans through a choice of health plans. The bill also addresses the fatally flawed Medicare physician-payment formula, which soon will force doctors to limit the number of seniors they can treat — right as the baby boomers enter Medicare.

Our position at the center of the health reform debate is an honor and a serious responsibility. Maintaining the status quo is not an option. The AMA will be at the table to improve the final legislation, including pushing for liability reform. We will continue to work with Congress and the administration to achieve health reform this year that best meets the needs of Americans.

J. JAMES ROHACK

President

American Medical Association

Chicago

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