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New England Journal of Medicine Compares Candidates

My number five reason to support Barack Obama for President was his health care plan.

According to Docuticker, the New England Journal of Medicine spent some time with the candidates campaigns and published their views on health care reform. I think it’s worth reproducing the candidates intro paragraphs:

+ Access to Quality and Affordable Health Care for Every American (John McCain)

Americans deserve leadership for real health care reform that provides access to high-quality medical care and ends spiraling costs. But the road to reform does not lead through Washington and a hugely expensive, bureaucratic, government-controlled system. We have all tangled with the existing bureaucracy enough to know that such an approach would diminish, not improve, quality. Our challenge is to protect and improve the care that doctors, nurses, and hospitals deliver, while increasing the availability and affordability of health insurance for Americans. I believe we can do this in a simple but powerful way: restoring doctors and patients to the center of health care decisions.

+ Modern Health Care for All Americans (Barack Obama)

Doctors and other health care providers work in extraordinary times and have unrivaled abilities, but increasingly our health care system gets in the way of their sound medical judgment. Increasing uncompensated care loads, administrative rules, and insurers’ coverage decisions inappropriately influence the practice of medicine. Washington sends dictates but no help.

We need health care reform now. All Americans should have high-quality, affordable medical care that improves health and reduces the burdens on providers and families. Reform must emphasize prevention, not just treatment of the sick; reduce medical errors and malpractice claims; and make the practice of medicine rewarding again. I believe that by working together we can make these goals a reality.

In my view, which you can check by reading the paragraphs above, Obama offers specifics – emphasize prevention, reduce medical errors and malpractice claims. McCain’s statement is a catalog of why he feels Obama’s approach is wrong along with a vague promise to “restoring doctors and patients to the center of health care decisions.”

I grant you that it’s not completely fair to characterize someone in a paragraph. But I think that this does show the candidate’s attitude toward healthcare reform. Obama is in a problem solving mode and McCain appears to be in a blaming mode. I prefer problem-solving in my candidates.

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