Republican Rudolph Giuliani has joined his fellow presidential candidates in issuing a proposal to revamp the U.S. healthcare system.
His 12 commitments to change healthcare include a $15,000 tax deduction for those without employer coverage to make insurance more affordable, and a health insurance credit to low-income individuals that could be paired with other revenue sources such as Medicaid or employer contributions.
In other provisions, Giuliani would expand access to health savings accounts, reform medical liability and offer block grants to states that come up with innovative healthcare solutions that would enroll more uninsured people and reduce costs. We have the opportunity to bring fairness to the tax treatment of healthcare and open up the marketplace for less-expensive healthcare options, Giuliani said.
Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois and John Edwards, a former senator from North Carolina, have issued universal healthcare proposals over the past few months that make similar promises to reduce costs and cover more uninsured. Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) has not said how she would achieve universal coverage but has issued a plan to reduce healthcare costs and improve quality of care.
Families USA in the meantime is planning to release an analysis of the various proposals from the presidential candidates in the fall, said a spokeswoman for the not-for-profit organization.
Were glad to see all of the candidates discussing approaches to expanding coverage, said Kathleen Stoll, director of health policy with Families USA. In looking at any proposal to provide tax credits for people in the individual market, however, we would have questions on how the market would be regulated to prevent discrimination against older and sicker people, she said. -- by Jennifer Lubell
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