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Consumer Reports Poll: Americans Demand Health Reform But Are Unsure About How to Achieve it
Date:2/5/2008

to purchase insurance and relying on market pressures and competition among insurance companies to hold prices down. Versions of this idea have been proposed by several leading Republican candidates.

Consumers Union Pressing For Reform

Consumers Union, the nonprofit publisher of Consumer Reports, will be pressing for changes that ensure that all Americans can get high-quality health care at a price they can afford, including guaranteed access and improved delivery of care. As state and federal proposals come up for debate, CU will use the following criteria to judge them:

Complete coverage: Private insurance and public programs must be expanded to guarantee that everyone is covered from cradle to grave, regardless of health status and ability to pay.

Fair cost spreading: No family should face financial ruin to pay for health care. Costs should be spread fairly among government, employers, and consumers.

Safer care: Millions of Americans are harmed each year by the care they receive. Improved safety systems would save billions of health-system dollars.

Better care: Comprehensive, easy-to-understand public information about the safety, cost, and quality of care by doctors, hospitals, and nursing homes would help consumers and employers choose the best care.

Prevention: Smoking and obesity related illnesses such as certain cancers, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes threaten to overwhelm health expenditures. The primary-care physicians whose job it is to prevent and control those conditions are the most poorly paid of all doctors. Our system should find ways to fix those problems.

For a copy of the full report, log on to http://www.ConsumerReportsHealth.org.

MARCH 2008

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