John McCain on Health Care

Higher taxes on cigarettes

McCain. supports higher taxes on cigarettes.
Source: US News & World Report, p. 23 Jan 17, 2000

Matching funds for seniors citizens’ prescription drugs

We’re asking senior citizens now to make a choice between their health and their income. They make too much money to be on Medicare and not enough to pay for their prescription drugs. We’ve got to devise a program that when a senior spends a certain part of their income on these prescription drugs that we’ll have a state and federal match for it. We can’t do that to our senior citizens.
Source: Des Moines Iowa GOP Debate Dec 13, 1999

Expand health insurance to 11 million uninsured children

[We have] 11 million children without health insurance. We’ve got to expand the children’s health insurance program. And I’ll tell you what: I have the guts to take the money where it shouldn’t be spent in Washington and put it where it should be spent, including 10 percent of the surplus.
Source: Des Moines Iowa GOP Debate Dec 13, 1999

Keep health care promises to aging veterans

McCain fears the dying generation of WWII veterans is being shortchanged in health care at an age when the old soldiers’ medical needs are more expensive than ever. “Our WWII veterans, the greatest generation, they’re dying at 30,000 a month, & they’re not getting the care they’ve been promised,” McCain said. “If you’ve got a flat budget, and millions of Americans who need expensive long-term and geriatric care, it doesn’t match up.” McCain said he plans to announce soon a “Contract with Veterans.”
Source: (X-ref Defense) The Sunday Enterprise (Brockton, MA), p. A7 Nov 21, 1999

Address powerlessness when faced with health care crises

While I appreciate the important contributions of managed care, we must protect the rights of patients in our nation’s health care system.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

“Patient rights” means value human life over dollars

I applaud the success of managed care in reining in skyrocketing health care costs, eradicating excessive health care expenditures, and reducing unnecessary overuse of the system. However, too many Americans feel trapped in a system which does not put their health care needs first. They believe that HMOs value a paper dollar more than they do a human life. We cannot continue to ignore the rights of patients. We have allowed the health care reform debate to be determined by special interest groups.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

Expand medical savings; community health; & tax deductions

It is simply disgraceful that 43 million Americans can not afford health care coverage. We must expand medical savings accounts, offer flexible savings accounts, provide full tax deductibility for self-employed health insurance costs, and allow tax deductibility for long-term care expenses. We should provide more funding for our nation’s community health centers, which have instituted a sliding fee schedule which allows people to contribute what they can afford and still receive health benefits.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

Patient Rights: access; MDs over HMOs; grievance process

    Several principles must guide our health care debate:
  1. Put patients and doctors in charge of their own health care, not HMO bureaucrats
  2. Improve access to affordable health care
  3. Choice of doctors to meet health care needs
  4. Guaranteed access to emergency care
  5. Continuity of care when employers change
  6. Doctors must be able to communicate openly and fully with their patients
  7. A free and fair grievance process in the event an HMO denies medical care, including relief in the courts.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

Allow paying extra for choice of doctors & care

Americans should be free to choose their doctors, including specialists, if they are willing to bear the additional costs which may accompany this freedom. People should be able to enroll in a point-of-service plan with access to a multitude of physicians, rather than be limited to an HMO which restricts freedom of choice in doctors.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

Full doctor-patient discussion even when it costs HMO

Today, some doctors are prevented by HMOs from openly discussing all medical treatments available to a patient. This is unconscionable. HMOs must not be allowed to stop doctors from openly discussing all possible care available, even if the procedures are not covered by the HMO. A doctor’s loyalty must be to the patient and not an HMO’s bottom line.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

Allow appealing HMO decisions externally & in court

We can not support a system that leaves [patients] powerless against corporate health care. [We need] both internal and external appeals processes which are fair and readily available and which use neutral experts who are not selected, paid, or otherwise beholden to the HMO. In life-threatening cases, there must be an expedited process. Finally, once all options to receive necessary medical care have been exhausted, every American should have the right to seek reasonable relief in the courts.
Source: Senate statement: “Health Care Reform” Jul 15, 1999

Supports patient rights; regulate nicotine as a drug

Source: Project Vote Smart, 1998, Jul 2, 1998

More tax-deductible health costs; limits on malpractice

Source: (x-ref to Tax Reform) Project Vote Smart, 1998 Jul 2, 1998

Voted NO on including prescription drugs under Medicare.

Vote on an amendment to establish a prescription drug benefit program through the Medicare health insurance program. Among other provisions, Medicare would contribute at least 50% of the cost of prescription drugs and beneficiaries would pay a $250 deduc
Bill HR.4690 ; vote number 2000-144 on Jun 22, 2000

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