Why Washington Isn't Solving Our Health Care Woes
Is there any hope for change? The answer is a resounding yes.
The start of a new presidential administration usually is an opportune time for
the enactment of significant legislation. Regardless of who the next president
is, he will be experienced in how the legislative cycle works and hopefully
will seize the opportunity to provide leadership.
On the other hand, legislation passes more easily when the same
party controls the White House and Congress. It is unclear which party will be
in charge in Washington next year -- and whichever one is in control of
Congress and the White House, it won't be with an overwhelming mandate from
The presidential election is expected to be very close. The
House, now controlled by Republicans, could go either way. The Senate is likely
to remain in the control of Republicans, but by a narrow margin.
Voters who are concerned about health care issues can influence
the politicians most effectively during the election campaign. If you think
change is needed, between now and November is the best time to communicate that
to the candidates of your choice. If you don't speak up, then the next Congress
will be a repeat of this one -- without any legislative changes in how our
health care system works.
Wayne L. Pines, WebMD's Washington columnist, is a former
Associate Commissioner and Chief Spokesman of the Food and Drug Administration.
The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those of