- Medicaid for All as a Public Option
- We must care for the vulnerable because it is not only morally correct, it’s fiscally responsible. We need to stop using Emergency Rooms to provide primary care to the uninsured, stop using prisons to care for the mentally ill, and start using a Public Option through universal Medicaid eligibility to cover every Marylander, which will improve health outcomes and will have a positive impact on health insurance premiums for everyone else.
- Improved Mental Health Services
- Prisons aren’t good places to treat the mentally ill and they’re costing us too much; we need to provide access to improve mental health care and should expand Mental Health Courts and Drug Courts across the state.
- Whole Body Coverage
- Require Essential Health Benefits in the HIX marketplace to include mental, dental, and long-term care benefits, and explore financial mechanisms to fund these mandates.
- Lower Prescription Drug Prices
- Authorize the State to use its purchasing power to drive down prescription drug prices for Medicaid beneficiaries and State employees, thereby bending the health care cost-curve and making Maryland's budget growth more sustainable.
- Transparent Pricing
- Extend the Health Services and Cost Review Commission's All Payer Single Rate Setting authority to all ambulatory and outpatient settings so as to realize the proven cost-saving and disparity-reducing benefits that have been found in the inpatient setting.
- Increased Firearm Regulations
- Introduce increased restrictions on firearm ownership and regulations. Read my: Legislative Plan to Combat Gun Violence
Maryland is at a crossroads, and as a legislator, my top priority is getting healthcare right. Our actions over the coming years will affect not only the health and well-being of our population and our economy, but will set a national example for how to achieve low cost, high quality healthcare.
Healthcare is the single greatest driver of both the Federal and Maryland budgets, accounting for the greatest percentage of government spending when compared to any other sector of the economy. Our budgets, and indeed our very lives, depend upon the delivery of high value care in Maryland. As such, healthcare reform must be executed by trained, knowledgeable, and experienced legislators who are ready to hit the ground running. I have contributed to the implementation of the ACA at the federal level, have training from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and have worked on health policy in the Maryland General Assembly. With this background, I am uniquely positioned to help Maryland meet the challenges of implementing healthcare reform over the coming decade.
Regardless of your health insurance status, there is much at stake as Maryland implements the ACA. We must strive to reduce rates of hospital-acquired infections, which afflict patients irrespective of their insurance coverage. We must align financial incentives to reward physicians for providing appropriate levels of care. The current Fee for Service model of reimbursement has, perversely, incentivized the systemic overuse of diagnostics and therapeutic treatments. There is much work to be done, and with your help in the Democratic Primary Election, I’ll work with our political leadership to advance the cause of high value health care reform.