patients' Bill of
|Presidential candidates Al
Gore and Joseph Lieberman are endorsing the
patients' Bill of Rights, legislation NFIB has
fought strongly against. |
emergency in America all right, and it's the
lack of a strong enforceable patients' bill of
rights," Gore said last week, according to the
The policy would set minimum
standards of care for businesses, potentially
costing small business owners millions in
lawsuits. NFIB fears that small employers would
be held liable for bad decisions made by
doctors. Mandates in the legislation would also
drive up the cost of health care significantly.
In a new television ad, Gore says such a
bill is needed "to take the medical decisions
away from the HMOs and insurance companies and
give them back to the doctors and nurses."
"A lot of times some bean counter behind
a computer terminal, who doesn't have a license
to practice medicine and doesn't have a right to
play God, will overrule the doctor's orders,"
Gore says in the ad.
Gore has also said
he would support a universal health care system
in the United States.
W. Bush does not support the patients' Bill of
Rights, and told NFIB that, "Patients should
have the ability to resolve their disputes first
with an independent reviewer, and then if
necessary, in courts. Any federal legislation
should state, like the law does in Texas, that
employers cannot be sued."
Bush told NFIB that small businesses should be
allowed to band together to acquire Association
Health Plans (AHP).
"Gov. Bush has put
his finger squarely on the real crisis in health
care -- the growing number of people unable to
afford health coverage of any kind," said NFIB
President Jack Faris. "We are delighted that he
recognizes AHPs as the single most effective
means of lowering the costs of skyrocketing
premiums which are pricing more and more small
business owners and employees out of the health
Gore, however, has spoken
out against AHPs.
Plans are the single most cost-effective way to
address the nation's greatest health-care
crisis: the growing number of people without any
kind of health coverage," Faris said. "The Vice
President's campaign is off-base to criticize
this much needed reform."