President Obama has been barnstorming the nation, pushing for passage of a health overhaul package. His Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, recently singled out Oregon as one of six states where insurers are pushing for double digit premium hikes. Health insurance companies like BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon say their health care expenses are rising, and more healthy people are dropping coverage, leaving more expensive, sick members to provide for.
Critics of Obama’s health care proposal — in no short supply — say the bill Obama wants on his desk would not do what’s needed to control costs.
In the meantime, the newly created Oregon Health Authority is in charge of planning for expanded access at the state level. Whatever is or isn’t done on Capitol Hill will certainly have an impact on the state’s ability to make sure all Oregonians have access to health care.
Do you have health insurance? How do you pay for your premiums or your health care costs? Have your rates gone up recently? What would you like to see in national health care legislation?
Note: We’ll also be catching up on what candidate races look like after yesterday’s filing deadline and the unexpected passing of State Treasurer Ben Westlund.
- Jeff Mapes: Political reporter for The Oregonian
- Jared Short: President of Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon
- Peter DeFazio: Democratic representative for Oregon’s 4th district
- Bruce Goldberg: Head of the Oregon Health Authority and Director of Oregon’s Department of Human Services