Obama Mulls Over Republican Tweaks To Health Care Plan

A week after unveiling the White House version of the proposed National Health Care Plan, President Obama says he’s opened his ears up to a handful of suggestions from the Republicans.

In a letter sent to Congressional leaders today, Obama said he’s looking into four different GOP ideas bounced around at last Thursday’s televised health care summit:

1. Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn’s proposal to increase the use of undercover investigators posing as patients to expose abuse and fraud in federal programs like Medicare and Medicaid.

2. Bigger pilot programs on possible changes to the rules governing medical malpractice lawsuits.

3. Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa’s suggestion that there be higher Medicaid reimbursements for doctors.

4. Wyoming Sen. John Barrasso’s suggestion to expand use of health savings accounts.

“After decades of trying, we’re closer than we’ve ever been to making health insurance reform a reality,” writes Obama. “I also believe that piecemeal reform is not the best way to effectively reduce premiums, end the exclusion of people with pre-existing conditions or offer Americans the security of knowing that they will never lose coverage, even if they lose or change jobs.”

Obama explores Republican ideas for revised health care bill [USA Today]