Cong. Smith sees rising concern over health care

The health care reform debate on Capitol Hill will spill over into the fall, as lawmakers aren’t expected to be able to push through any reforms before the beginning of the August recess. Nebraska Congressman Adrian Smith says access to health care will continue to be a problem in any case.

Smith says there’s rising concern from people across the country, and he says people in rural Nebraska should be particularly watchful. Smith, a Republican and a Gering native, says there are health care providers already who don’t want to take Medicare and Medicaid patients.

He says some dentists are refusing Medicare and Medicaid patients as they get a lower reimbursement and there’s no incentive. Smith says he feels there was a big drive to get it all done before the recess and he’s somewhat relieved that the push failed. He says people were on board with health care reform before they really knew what was being proposed.

Smith says that was clearly the case with the stimulus plan, as more people backed it earlier this year when it appeared to be more for infrastructure. “The more they learned about it, the less supportive they became,” Smith says, “and we’re seeing that now with health care as well.” He says rushing through legislation is a bad way to do business and an especially bad way to make policy.

Thanks to Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton

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