July 24th, 2009
09:05 AM ET
9 years ago

Experts debate proposed 'big brother' medical council

President Obama tells audience in Shaker Heights, Ohio, on Thursday that current system breeds wasteful spending.

President Obama tells audience in Shaker Heights, Ohio, on Thursday that current system breeds wasteful spending.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Obama administration is touting a provocative proposal to give a medical advisory council the power to help decide the scope of coverage that would be eligible for reimbursement under Medicare.

Administration officials say the proposed council would improve health care quality and control costs. But some health care industry groups object to the proposal, saying such a council would not be qualified to make those judgments.

This council would consist of doctors and health care experts who make recommendations based on extensive data and analysis of best health care practices, according to administration officials.

Proponents believe the approach would improve care and eliminate some wasteful spending by doctors who are now paid separately for each visit and procedure they authorize. Instead, this council could recommend, for example, a comprehensive approach to treat a patient with chronic heart condition or high cholesterol.

Filed under: Health care
soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. dave

    the problem is the executives The CEO of United Health was paid 1/6 of the entire amount spent on health care one year

    eliminate all the CEO's CFO's anyone earning mor than $1 million should have pay cut in half

    that is the problaem not doctors and nurses

    July 24, 2009 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  2. Salil

    When did America become a nanny state that needed the government to interfere in the very basic decisions of one's life? When did individual responsibility become 'decision by committee'? This is rapidly getting out of hand.

    July 24, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  3. Karl in Charleston,SC

    I want my DOCTOR and ME to decide my healthcare, not the government!

    July 24, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  4. jaye

    This is just plain stupid.
    What about medicare and medicade? Are they big brother, too?
    You people have lost your minds.

    July 24, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  5. S Callahan

    As a retired citizen in America I can definately say I oppose this...
    each person has a varied of conditions with varied treatments..no one is alike..and to have an 'authority' to determine what is viable and what is not is essentially saying....'we'll keep this one..this one can go'..it's scary to think about....again the question of 'who values the living' comes up. Perhaps the goverment would better serve itself by seeking out the opinion of the citizens of what is wasteful and what is not...send the survey out every 6 months, or 1 year ...and make decisions based on a collective group and not individual or 'authority' of a VERY small group. Focus on waste and savings would be had. Just a thought.

    July 24, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  6. Bing Hillory

    The elimination of 'wasteful spending' unfortunately means life or death to many Americans, especially to older folks, prisoners, unpopular people, politically-incorrect folks, etc. Adoption of Obamacare would be a travesty and a disaster for the USA.

    July 24, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  7. Scott, Tucson

    Each day more details of this bill comes out. So I guess if you have Obamacare and in need of an emergency heart triple by-pass, you would first have to wait for a medical council to get around to your case to decide whats the best course of action if any would be suited for you? If the Dems want this kind of health care than why don't they move to Britain or Canada?

    July 24, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  8. Trade Freedom for Security, Lose Both

    And does this council also decide who is granted or denied life saving treatment? What criteria are used – cost, chance of success, who is the more "valuable" person? This body can easily and quickly get involved in ethical decisions that government simply should not be involved. More Government in your life means less personal freedom.

    July 24, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  9. lovable liberal

    A council of doctors as opposed to the current situation, a bunch of accountants for insurance companies who get paid for claim suppression.

    Think I'd prefer the council of doctors and health care experts...

    July 24, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  10. chubby

    People are finally waking up, anything obama wants is not good for us nor for the country. Everything he has done so far has taken this countries economy to the brink of collapse. I just hope this country can hold on until the mid term elections and we can replace some of his fellow tax and spend demorats. How is "change" working out for this country so far. What a joke. obamby talks about the 1.3 trillion debt he inherited but does not talk about how he has quadrupled the debt and the deficit.

    July 24, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  11. Proud Member..Party of No

    Everything about this health care plan is bad and the more we learn the worse it gets.

    It's time for Obama to step down. He has failed miserably on everything he has done so far.

    July 24, 2009 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  12. Stephanie

    ALWAYS hte negative, glass half empty spin in CNN headlines...so does CNN support the continued escalation of out of control health care costs for citizens, gov't and employers?

    It is easy for politicians and extremely well paid news people to spin the negatives on health care and the paltry increase in minimum wage earners as they enjoy gold plated salaries, indexed pensions and huge often undisclosed earnings.

    One wonders if there is ever a pang of guilt when you report on how middle, working and poor people live in America.

    July 24, 2009 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  13. Nancy - Houston

    I think the best thing that could bring down the costs of medicare is a "nose-sniffing" group that can sniff out medicare fraud. This in itself could go a long way to help pay for healthcare reform.

    July 24, 2009 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  14. Ancient Texan

    I do not want my health care dictated by a 21 year old government appointee that majored in political science. A Doctor has enough trouble getting it right.

    July 24, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  15. joanna

    we already have a big brothers, we call them the insurance companies. After all, they hold all the cards. they work for profit, not your wellness.

    July 24, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
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