Alex Wong/Getty Images
U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and Vice President Joseph Biden (L) leave after making a statement at the East Room of the White House after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the health care reform legislation March 21, 2009 in Washington, DC. The proposed legislation has become the signature piece of Obama's domestic policy agenda and has eluded U.S. presidents dating back to Theodore Roosevelt.
It will cost $940 billion over 10 years and expand insurance coverage to some 32 million Americans by mandating and heavily subsidizing the purchase of health insurance. Beyond that, little is known for sure about how the health care reform legislation, passed yesterday by the House of Representatives, will impact the average American. It’s been called historic legislation, on par with the expansion of the safety net that Medicare and Social Security brought about, but will it fundamentally change the way that this country views medical care? How will the government enforce the insurance mandate and how affordable will insurance be for low-income families? Will the bill end up reducing the federal deficit or add to it? How will states and local medical agencies be affected, will their Medicare reimbursements continue to drop? We can’t get all the answers but Patt will carefully tip toe through the health care reform bill, explaining it all along the way.
Elizabeth McGlynn, Associate Director, RAND Health; Distinguished Chair in Health Quality and Senior Principal Researcher
Ted Miller, communication director at NARAL Pro-Choice America
Dr. Jonathan Fielding, Director of Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and the County Health Officer
Senator Barbara Boxer, D-California
David Walker, President and CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, a non-partisan organization working to increase public awareness of the key fiscal challenges threatening the nation. He is the former Comptroller General of the United States.