With more than 45 million people uninsured and health care eating up a larger and larger slice of federal and state budgets, as well as household budgets, the need to enact reforms seems stronger than ever. But what those reforms will look like is a battle likely to consume the next several weeks in Washington.
The Augusta Chronicle will look Sunday at what might be ahead and what health care reform would mean in Augusta from variety of informed perspectives: an uninsured patient; a primary care doctor; a hospital CEO; a clinic director who serves many uninsured; a pharmacist; and a specialist physician who also seeks to get the uninsured better care.
For pharmacist Stewart Flanagin of Hill Drug Co., reform means getting insurance companies to charge the same price, regardless of where the patient is getting the drug.
Theres just inequity across the board, he said.
Even if you have insurance now, what may come out of a public insurance plan as part of the reform could influence what your insurance decides to cover in the future, and perhaps not for the better, said Terrence Cook, an Augusta allergist and chair of the Project Access Committee of the Richmond County Medical Society, which coordinates donated physician services for qualified uninsured patients.
Its not a great help to you if theyre not going to pay for things you need, Dr Cook said.
Read all about it in Sunday's Augsuta Chronicle.