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Local medical experts discuss health care reform

READ MORE: Local medical experts discuss health care reform

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- It's a big concern for most Americans -- health care.

With Republicans dominating the polls in last week's elections many say their first priority in Washington is health care reform legislation.

UNCW held a health care reform panel discussion breaking down what they think will happen in Washington and how it will affect us here in the Cape Fear region.

"Having the health care reform bill is critical," said UNCW Nursing professor Kathleen Ennen. "We have something to work with. Is it perfect? No. We all know that, but you have to have something to begin and we have that beginning and I believe that it's a really strong beginning."

Health care is the topic of conversation for most Americans. With a struggling economy and fewer jobs, finding ways to get health care is not the easiest thing to do and many are anxiously waiting for health care reform legislation.

Dr. Jonathan Hines is with the Wilmington Health Associate. Hines said, "Things will have to be changed about it but the idea that we will turn around and reverse our direction on health care reform I do not expect."

Whatever the turn may be Republicans say they're hoping to make changes soon. Last week's elections helped secure a Republican presence in Washington and they're on a mission to make a change.

"There's the potential for some further debate on some of the issues down the pike," said Ennen. "In terms of a lame-duck Congress and the changes we're all gonna see take place after the first of January."

"Adding 32 million uninsured people onto the insured ranks is going to be a tremendous challenge for health care to accommodate and what we'll have to do is we'll have to think differently and we will have to administer care differently than we're doing now to accomplish that," said Hines.

Ennen is more concerned about the cost of it all. She said, "How are they going to fund it? That's the question. We as citizens need to hold our Representatives and our Senators feet to the fire and ask them to do what is the best thing for us and our country and in terms here. Here we are we sit in Wilmington and we need to make sure the people representing us are doing that."

Some of the panelists say they're preparing for a different health care system but say some things will have to remain the same.

"There are some things about health care reform some general principles that are too important to ignore like improving access to care, improving the quality of care and bending the cost of care downward," said Hines.

For more on health care reform go to:

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Health Care Plan

Some parts of the health care plan may be adoptable, but for the most part, the plan is very poorly designed and much too expensive for employers. In addition, the cost for those insured will rise significantly. The plan needs to be totally revised.


As long as healthcare is a entrepeneurial, moneymaking endeavor for doctors, and a calculated win/win gamble for insurance companies, the cost will never decrease. The only way to cut the cost is to make it FREE for everyone (who is a citizen), put doctors on salary (they won't need to order needless tests and procedures to pad pockets), eliminate insurance (they won't second guess doctors, or refuse to pay for care), enact tort reform (eliminate frivilous lawsuits), and ration care to those who NEED it, and those who will have a positive outcomes.

anything else is the continued theft of the American dream by big insurance and unethical doctors (not all doctors are greedy...) from the uneducated, the old, the poor, and (most of all) the middle class who fund it all.

Given your opinion on the matter...

you'd be better served by moving to Great Britain or Canada. What you fail to realize is the driving factor behind rising healthcare cost is over-utilization. Eliminating co-pays for doctor visits will go a long way towards lowering the cost. Just because you pay $25 for a primary care physician visit doesn't come close to paying the full cost of the visit. Your insurance company is paying the largest part of the tab...after the visit has been re-priced by the insurance company in accordance with the contract your physician has with your insurance company.

Once again, if you want to wait months-on-end for diagnostic testing or elective surgery...move North or across the Big Pond.

Taxpayer, your mind has been

Taxpayer, your mind has been poisoned by the Repubs. The healthcare bill is far from perfect, but it is a start. Hopefully the Republican Party will not destroy something so important to all Americans. And, as for waiting months for diagnostic testing, not so. Just propaganda by the squirming, squealing, insurance industry to turn public opinion against a National health care system.

Guess again

the Insurance Industry would love to see tort reform enacted as a first step to controlling insurance costs.

It's the tax paying public who are opposed to providing another entitlement program for those who chose not to be self sufficient and self supporting.

You think Obamacare will work. Watch the migration of physicians from the medical field when they are forced to accept Federal mandates on fees and charges. It's already starting.

It's tough enough now for new physicians to enter the medical field. Watch what happens when the realization sets in that Federal fee levels will not allow the repayment of education expenses or the opportunity to provide a reasonable lifestyle.

What is it about that which you do not understand.

And if our system of health care is so poor, why do thousands of undocumented and illegal immigrants fill public health centers every day?


my mind has not been poisoned by the statement was based upon facts, which liberals such as yourself are slow to grasp. One thing I've learned about Libs...using facts and logic is a great way to annoy you.

Not so?

I believe it's half of the colo-rectal cancers in Great Britain progress to untreatable/terminal while patients wait in a queue for National Healthcare to find an open spot in chemo. That figure is directly from National Healthcare itself.

The average wait for an artificial shoulder in Canada exceeds two years.

With 32 million more people on healthcare and over forty percent of current physicians planning on refusing to take Mediacre/Medicaid (and likely Tricare) unless rates are raised and they are allowed freedom of treatment, how do you expect to avoid rationing and long delays? Remember - that is the one big difference between Hillary's doomed plan and Obamacare. She would have made private practice illegal. There is NOTHING in Obamacare preventing any doctor from rejecting government slave wages and taking private, cash only patients.