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Every household in the country relies on its ability to provide adequate access to healthcare. Current spending on healthcare in this country totals over $2.5 trillion or 17.5% of our Gross Domestic Product. Healthcare costs continue to rise threatening the ability of many average Americans to access essential services for themselves and their families. One major illness can financially devastate a household. That said, arriving at a meaningful plan to structure a healthcare plan that is fair, affordable and responsible has become a political football rather than an issue which draws thoughtful bipartisan solutions. 

Why do we approach this most important part of our lives differently than almost anything else? If my car is broken, I consult a mechanic, if I need financial advice I meet with an accountant, legal advice, a lawyer, educational input, a teacher, yet in terms of healthcare policy we fail to take the same common-sense approach. It makes no sense. 

I believe that as a basis for discussing healthcare policy, we should look to those in the medical community such as the hundreds of thousands of medical professionals in organizations such as the AMA who deal with these issues every day. Looking to these professionals seems like the logical starting point for meaningful policy decisions. As such I support many if the policy goals as articulated by the AMA as a guide for future legislative discussion and action. 

• Ensure that individuals currently insured do not become uninsured and take steps toward coverage and access for all Americans. 
• Maintain key insurance market reforms, such as pre-existing conditions, guaranteed issue and parental coverage for young adults. 
• Stabilize and strengthen the individual insurance markets. 
• Ensure that low and moderate-income citizens are able to secure affordable and adequate coverage. 
• Ensure that Medicaid, CHIP, and other safety net programs are funded. 
• Reduce regulatory burdens that detract from patient care and increase costs. 
• Provide greater cost transparency throughout the healthcare system. 
• Incorporate common sense medical liability reforms. 

Our current system needs reform in order to survive and meet our healthcare needs. I am committed to working for solutions that are fair, affordable, fiscally responsible and that are developed in conjunction with those who know and understand the system best. As has been articulated, this is a difficult and complicated issue. Policy that has such a significant impact on our society should be developed thoughtfully, deliberately and in a bipartisan manner. 

Committee to Elect Mike Marsicano
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