Thursday, March 5, 2009

White House Health Care Summit Gets Going

(Image courtesy NYT)

More than 150 people have gathered at the White House for the President's Summit on Health Care. They include politicians (naturally), industry professionals, doctors, hospitals, insurance agencies, and consumer advocates. The President has vowed to stop the stalemate created by lobbyists and special interest groups that has prevented the U.S. from having a functioning health care system, and that starts with getting everyone in a room together and figuring out what our ideas are.

DID YOU KNOW: You can watch Live Feed of the Summit sessions on the White House Website. Click Here if you love open government

Seems pretty sound to me. Healthcare is expensive, and it's going to get a lot more expensive unless the government can do something to reign in the costs. Industry sure as hell isn't doing it on their own. Did you know that Americans spend $2.3 trillion on health care and that it accounts for 17.6% of our national economic output? By 2018, if no changes are implemented, it's expected to be 20% of our economic output and half of that cost will be born by public programs.

Working with the industry and with the laborers involved (doctors, nurses, pharmacists, etc.) we can control costs much better and help people get well. Sick people can't work, they can't turn the economy around, they can't pay down their mortgages, they can't help their children succeed. We need healthy Americans and healthy American health care.

So let's see what the summit can do.