Op-Eds

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  • Give patients control of health care
    Posted in Op-Eds on June 20, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Health Care

    Trustees of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds released a report on the two programs’ financial status and news was not good: Medicare is likely to go bankrupt by 2024 —five years earlier than last year’s estimate. This threatens senior care. At this rate, Medicare will not be available for future generations. However, we can act now to save Medicare, improve quality of care — and keep Washington bureaucrats out of patients’ medical decisions. Fixing Medicare should not compromise pati... Read more

  • DRS. PHIL ROE & LARRY BUCSHON SPECIAL TO THE COURIER: Health care law has consequences
    Posted in Op-Eds on June 16, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Education, Jobs & Economy, Health Care

    As doctors, we've seen personally how the rising costs of health care can place even greater strain on individuals, families and employers. Year after year the cost of care goes up, leading some patients to neglect the treatments or care they need simply because they cannot afford it. Employers often face the difficult reality of maintaining coverage for their employees or cutting back their payrolls. Taxpayers, at the state and federal levels, are forced to pay more to fund government health ca... Read more

  • New Security Bill Designed To Protect The Public At Congressional Events
    Posted in Op-Eds on February 1, 2011 | Preview rr

    The devastating tragedy that occurred in Tucson, Arizona left many concerned about their safety at Congressional events. While I have continued to meet with my constituents and feel safe in our dealings, I have heard from some Tennesseans that they are concerned about their own security at official events. In fact, a recent poll commissioned by The Hill showed 91% of voters believe it is important to have security at these events. No one should be afraid to exercise his or her First Amendment ri... Read more

  • ROE: After Obamacare: Principles for reform
    Posted in Op-Eds on January 14, 2011 | Preview rr
    Tags: Health Care

    Next week, the House will vote to repeal and replace Obamacare with reforms that will keep control of health care decisions in the hands of patients and their doctors. As a physician, I've seen firsthand the problems insurance companies have created for patients. I've seen firsthand how government programs have made beneficiaries worse consumers of health care. I've seen how the cost of health care has exploded and made insurance unaffordable. I want to fix these problems. But Obamacare will not... Read more

  • Social Security COLA & Impacts on Seniors
    Posted in Op-Eds on October 20, 2010 | Preview rr

    On Friday, the Social Security Administration announced there would be no cost-of-living-adjustment (COLA) for 2011, which marks the second consecutive year that there will be no COLA. While the consumer price index (CPI) shows that average prices on a number of categories haven’t risen, that’s not the experience for a lot of East Tennesseans, particularly with our difficult economic environment. This poses a great challenge to seniors who are trying to survive on fixed incomes, many of whom are... Read more

  • A board Congress should nail
    Posted in Op-Eds on June 23, 2010 | Preview rr
    Tags: Health Care

    Tucked away in the 2,000-plus pages of the health care law is a provision that would create a harmless-sounding entity called the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). Its job, as laid out in the law, would be to enact savings from the Medicare program when actual spending exceeds targeted spending levels. It doesn't sound like something to be too concerned about, right? If you're a senior or a physician, you should be. For comparison, consider what has happened with Medicare physician paym... Read more

  • TennCare Lessons For Modern Health Care Reform
    Posted in Op-Eds on July 29, 2009 | Preview rr
    Tags: Health Care

    Tennessee was home to a failed attempt at universal single payer care, and has lessons to teach a President who has promised that in pursuing his goal of universal health care, he will learn from the policy failures of the past. In 1994 Tennessee implemented managed care in its Medicaid program, creating a system known as TennCare. The objective was to use the anticipated savings from Medicaid to fund and expand coverage for children and the uninsured. The result was a program that nearly bankru... Read more

  • Pursue Reform Not According To Party, But By Adherence To Certain Principles
    Posted in Op-Eds on April 29, 2009 | Preview rr
    Tags: Health Care

    As a physician from Tennessee who has delivered babies for over 30 years, I have seen our healthcare system change dramatically. Some people said I must have gone off my meds when I decided to run for Congress, but having extensive experience as a physician enables me to lend my experience to the debate over health reform in Washington. I was part of a medical group with 70 physicians and 350 staff, and we’ve lived through many attempts at reform at the national and state levels. Some may recall... Read more