Republicans started their national convention today in Cleveland with the draft of their 2016 platform still under wraps. At press time, the official GOP website showed a copy of the 2012 platform, and a survey voters could use to give their thoughts on what the party’s top principles should be.
But Conservative Review, a conservative news organization, found and posted a scan of a platform draft here. Republicans discuss general health policy issues in a section starting on Page 30 of the scan, and Medicare and Medicaid in a section starting on Page 37.
Republican leaders are still talking about how they should handle issues such as immigration and marriage, according to news reports.
But Donald Trump and his Republican opponents seemed to agree on general health finance policy principles during the primary season, and they seem to build on the kinds of ideas Republicans put in their platform in 2012, when Mitt Romney was the Republican nominee.
For a look at some of what the Republicans might end up saying about paying for health care and long-term care in the final version of their platform, based on the draft posted by Conservative Review, read on:
Republicans say they think state oversight can improve the health care market, but that state mandates hurt it. (Image: Thinkstock)
1. Strengthen the role of states.
Republicans say in the platform draft that they would like to fix much of what they believe is wrong with the current health insurance regulatory system by repealing the Affordable Care Act and returning states to their historic role of regulating local insurance markets.
But Republicans say they also will “call on state officials to reconsider the costly medical mandates, imposed under their own laws, which price millions of low-income families out of the insurance market.”
Republicans say they would give state Medicaid block grants, and much more ability to decide for themselves how they want to use the cash.
Republicans included similar provisions in the 2012 platform.
Republicans say health savings accounts empower patients. (Image: Thinkstock)
2. Promote use of personal health accounts.
Trump and many of his opponents, such as Dr. Ben Carson, made a point of talking about health savings accounts and other personal health accounts during the primary season.
In the draft platform, Republicans say, “We look to the growth of Health Savings Accounts and Health Reimbursement Accounts that empower patients and advance choice in healthcare.”
Republicans included a similar provision in the 2012 platform.
Republicans say they want to help consumers get better information about the cost of care. (Photo: Thinkstock)
3. Give individuals more ability to bargain.
Republicans say in the draft that, “Consumer choice is the most powerful factor in healthcare reform,” and that they want to “promote price transparency so consumers can know the cost of treatments before they agree to them.”
They also say they support letting individuals and small groups form health insurance purchasing pools; letting health insurers sell coverage across state lines; protecting “individuals with preexisting conditions who maintain continuous coverage … from discrimination”; and offering purchasers of individual coverage the same tax treatment that purchasers of group health coverage get.
Republicans put similar provisions in the 2012 platform.
Republicans say they believe many Americans would prefer to age at home. (Photo: Thinkstock)
4. Providing good care for our aging population.
“Our aging population must have access to safe and affordable care,” Republicans say in the draft. “Because most seniors desire to age at home, we will make homecare a priority in public policy and will implement programs to protect against elder abuse.”
In the 2012 platform, Republicans included similar ideas, along with a statement that, “We will champion the right of individual choice in senior care.”
In the 2012 platform, Republicans also mentioned the need to ensure that quality care is provided “across the care continuum from home to nursing home to hospice.”
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