Tom Price on Healthcare: ‘Imperative We Have a System that Provides Choices’

House Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price, R-Ga., joined at left by Vice-Chairman Todd Rokita, R-Ind., presides over a markup session as the panel presses ahead with a 10-year balanced budget plan that cuts federal health care programs and agency budgets even though tea party conservatives are rebelling in a setback …

HHS Secretary nominee Rep. Tom Price says, if confirmed, he will commit to ensuring that Obamacare’s replacement plan provides a patient-centered system that revolves around Americans making choices for their own healthcare.

Appearing before the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday, the Georgia congressman and orthopedic surgeon laid out six principles of health care: “Affordability, Accessibility, Quality, Responsiveness, Innovation, and Choices.”

Price said regarding any potential plan to replace Obamacare:

It’s imperative we have a system that’s accessible for every single American, that’s affordable for every single American, that incentivizes and provides the highest quality health care that the world knows, and provides choices to patients so they are the ones selecting who is treating them, when, where, and the like.

Democrat senators on the committee pressed Price with questions about whether he would commit to ensuring that no one who received an insurance card through an Obamacare exchange plan would lose coverage. Republican senators, however, continually pointed out that President Obama himself repeated many times his pledge that, with the Affordable Care Act, “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor; if you like your health plan, you can keep your health plan” – a promise that was never realized as millions of Americans lost their health insurance plans and their choice of medical providers.

At Price’s courtesy hearing last week with the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, ranking member Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) criticized Price and Republicans: “Just last week you voted to begin the process of ripping apart our healthcare system, without any plan to replace it, despite independent studies showing that nearly 30 million people would lose healthcare coverage.”

Pointing out that Obamacare is a government-focused system that guarantees coverage – but not access – to health care, Price responded to Murray, “I think it is imperative we have a system in place that has patients at the center and allows for every single American to have the opportunity to gain access for the coverage they want.”


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