August 10th, 2009
11:27 AM ET
13 years ago

White House launches health care 'reality check' Web site

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/08/10/art.whhcreality0810.wh.jpg caption="The White House launched a new Web page Monday."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) – The White House is stepping up its efforts to promote health care reform with the launch of a new Web initiative that officials say is designed to combat misinformation about the issue.

Citing what it calls "a troubling trend" of "wild rumors and scare tactics," the White House Monday announced the launch of http://www.whitehouse.gov/realitycheck/, a new Web page which "focuses on what reform really means for you and your family" and "debunks some common myths along the way," White House New Media Director Macon Phillips wrote on the official White House blog.

In keeping with President Obama's use of social networking sites to engage and utilize his network of supporters during his presidential campaign, the new page also provides users with a number of ways to notify their own networks of contacts about the page and its content.

The Web page features half a dozen videos from Obama aides who discuss various aspects of health care reform and it also has a set of "faq's" or frequently asked questions about health care reform.

"Moving forward, we'll use this platform to provide you with the latest 'Reality Checks' and tools to combat misinformation," Phillips writes in the blog post announcing the new Web page.

The launch of the new administration Web page comes two days after Obama used his weekly Internet and radio address to address recent attacks on Democratic efforts to pass health care reform legislation. In the address, Obama responded to "outlandish rumors that reform will promote euthanasia, cut Medicaid, or bring about a government takeover of health care."

Obama's comments came one day after former Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin posted a message on Facebook that suggested Obama's agenda for health care reform, if passed, would deny care to her parents and to her youngest child, Trig, who was born with Down's Syndrome.

The White House's aggressive move to defend health care reform also comes after a week where town halls meetings with congressmen across the country have been attended and disrupted by citizens concerned about the possible adverse effects of health care reform.

soundoff (302 Responses)
  1. ndlily

    To all of you who say government can't handle managing health care, even though that's not what I think this is, last I checked, the private sector wasn't doing so hot. Haven't you read the statistics lately on how many deaths could be prevented if we had a better system in place to cut down on malpractice and misdiagnosis? Who doesn't have one or more stories about hospitals and doctors screwing up because they only care about the bottom line and how many patients they can push through in a certain amount of time? How many medical bankruptcy stories are out there? Sure the people lived . . . but what is living when you had saved all our life for retirement and now you're struggling to just keep the utilities and taxes paid and they have a lien against your house so anything you might have left your kids will be gone?

    Then, when you've answered those questions, tell me exactly how the federal government could possibly hurt this situation. It's broken, people, and if the medical establishment isn't willing to try to help, then it is time for someone to step in, and the only institution big enough is the government.

    August 10, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  2. Linda

    Yippee! More propaganda! Why can't they accept the fact that the majority of Americans don't want government run health care. Yet, this administration "doesn't want to hear them talk." They don't want to debate, or compromise, or listen to new ideas about tort reform...they just want to shove this down our throats whether we like it or not. That's not the kind of government they promised us (surprise, surprise, a politician lied).

    August 10, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  3. DL

    This whole argument is ridiculous. Those that believe in 'death squads', 'rationing', and all the rest of this nonsense. Look at the HIGHEST ranked health care system in the world (And it's not the U.S. for those that claim it is) it's Denmark. If we do nothing, the system will collapse regardless, it is NOT sustainable and has collapsed for 50 million Americans, that work just as hard as you do, and pay their taxes. The only message the GOP is sending is that the average American is meaningless in their eyes, they care more about profit than peoples lives.

    August 10, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  4. dreamer

    just wana know to all the na-sayers.what is so wrong about health care for all americans?heck you all are already waiting for health care disision made for proffit and not your care.what would really be the big differnce.only you wont be back billed for unknown condition years later.

    August 10, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  5. madison

    I honestly don't understand the comments like this one:

    "Does the government run anything efficiently?"

    Actually, YES, the government runs many agencies quite efficiently! How many letters have you mailed in your lifetime? Of all of those letters mailed, how many either got lost or didn't make it to the destination you mailed them to? What's the price of a stamp now, 42 cents??? I think the US Postal service runs very efficiently and when I compare the cost of a stamp to mail a payment versus the additional cost that many companies (especially credit card companies) charge to do an online payment ($7 for one of my credit cards), I'll take the USPS every time! I realize that the "govnernment" can improve in some areas, but seriously people . . . come on!!

    August 10, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  6. nurse

    It's a propaganda site, You can't get specific line and page explanations , All one need do is read the bill and everything is clear. these are not distotions but facts . Like sec. 117 pg 354 resricting access to health care for special needs children.

    August 10, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  7. Bdog

    Yes, the hired hit-bloogers from the insurance companies and the G-NO-P are out in force. You can tell by their hit-and-run lie-spreading MO.

    The website is very informative. Pleas send a link to it to friends and family. We must have sound sensible health care and insurance reform.
    Doing both will shore up medicare and the other gov't healthcare institutions as well. The G-NO-P is against this because, well, they are just against middle America, period. What have they done for us, really?

    August 10, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  8. anti liberal

    so is obama using taxpayer money to fund this site???

    Is it ACORN's money??

    Moveon.org's money???

    How about some investigative journalism CNN???

    August 10, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  9. Michael M, Phoenix AZ

    Ask your Repubican Senator or Congressperson why they didn't do anything about health care reform when they were the majority from 1997-2006? Ask them each how much campaign money they received from the insurance companies? Folks, health care and insurance is all about the money. Ask your insurance representative how much he/she gets in commission every time they write a new policy plus renewals....They aren't salaried you know.

    August 10, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  10. Paul Nielsen

    If the far rights dont want the government involved in the health plan why didnt they offer a better plan when they held the white house for 8 years, better yet the could introduce a resulution in both houses to abolish medicare.

    August 10, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  11. WI Cheesehead

    Ya’ll can shout as loud as you’d like but the reality is still the same. People with full benefits are taking the risk to get things done outside of the USA. Why you ask? Because healthcare in the USA is too expensive. 1 million in 2008 alone and counting did medical tourism abroad for different procedure to be done there. Example heart valve replacement in the USA is about $200k. With insurance, after deductibles and co-pay you’ll still have $30-40k out of your pocket. Simple math, same procedure in India is $10k everything included. $10k and someone didn’t involve their health insurance, yes people are taking the risk to affordable healthcare.

    August 10, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  12. Kate in SW Fla

    Since most business CEOs and economists are now admitting that maybe, just maybe the Obama administration was right after all, the Republicans are getting desperate. One after another, they are realizing that BIG Government saved the economy, not the Free Market. What was so astounding about the cash for clunkers success? People are GETTING CREDIT again! What was so astounding about the increase in home sales? People are GETTING CREDIT again. Small businesses are starting to thrive again, why? Same reason. The Republicans just can't stand it, but Obama has saved the world's economy! Donald Trump supported McCain but the other day he said – well, I was wrong, I'd hire OBAMA!! Roubini, same thing. Not that you uneducated rednecks even understand what all of this means. But, just desperate to stop health care reform for one reason and one reason only. Politics. The saddest part is, if they DO stop health care reform, business will never support a Republican again, because these costs are crushing them.

    August 10, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  13. Scott, Tucson

    Why don't Obama and Pelsoi try fixing the national unemployment problem along with Social Security and the Post Office first?

    August 10, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  14. Gator

    Good for the White House. Many Americans prefer the truth over lies from so-called "conservatives" any day.

    The uncivilized action from the right-wing fringe is absolutely disgusting and evil. They reflect badly on true conservatives who want to engage in honest discourse.

    August 10, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  15. Peter E

    Let's hope this factcheck website is more accurate than the 'truth squads' of the previous president.

    August 10, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  16. Greg in MO

    Do not trust the White House website!

    Read the bill – HR3200.

    This website is designed to sugar-coat the truth in the bill. This website is also full of assumptions as to the means of financing the bill. DO NOT TRUST IT! Look for the information yourself.

    Take the time to understand what the bill is saying. I'm not a lawyer so it took me several re-reads to understand what it is saying.

    August 10, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  17. T'SAH from Virginia

    My Question Is – Why aren't the REPUBLICANS holding town hall meetings to explain to their constituents what the HEALTH CARE PLAN is all about and try to come up with something better???? Then, they can have their own SHOUTING MATCH with NO ONE else there to argue back!!! Let CNN and all of the other cable news channels COVER THAT!!!

    No – that would NEVER happen because the REPUBS do not have a BETTER PLAN!!! The REPUBS rather make it seem it is the PEOPLE who are outraged.

    The REPUBS need to look at the "MAN IN THE MIRROR". They would truly see how DUMB and DUMBER they are fighting against a REFORM and having NO SOLUTIONS!!... The PARTY OF NO sense; NO suggestions and NO solutions!!!

    August 10, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  18. TangledThorns

    Good idea for a website but I think its too little, too late. Oh well, Sarah Palin will learn from Obama's partisan mistakes when she wins the WH in 2012.

    August 10, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  19. Henry Miller

    A web site already exists for that: factcheck.org

    August 10, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  20. Limbaugh is a liberal

    When you have to make up facts and tell lies to try to win arguments, you really should re-examine whether you are on the right side of an issue.

    August 10, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  21. nurse

    Correction sec 1177

    August 10, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  22. Sam Sixpack

    Go to the website. Read it for yourself. The site's authors think you are an idiot.

    August 10, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  23. Common Sense

    Most people do not have the ability or desire to learn the facts with regard to health care and the need for reform. It is much more fun to stand up on your chair at a town meeting and scream slogans engineered by the Texas dirty tricks squad and Foxs' entertainment/demagogue buffoons. Education is what makes democracy work, so roll up your sleeves America, turn off your TV and do a little homework, and lets sit down and fix this problem.

    August 10, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  24. Doyle Wiley, MI

    It doesn't speak well of us as a country when so many people are ok with the ideal of leaving millions without health care. I don't care if the new system works perfectly in it's inception; real, living, breathing, human beings need health care, now!

    August 10, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  25. nurse

    why does the gov need real time direct access to my bank accounts for health care ????

    Sec.163 pg58-59 lines 5-24

    August 10, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
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