(Extensions of Remarks - June 26, 2012)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E1138]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []



                        HON. MICHAEL C. BURGESS

                                of texas

                    in the house of representatives

                         Tuesday, June 26, 2012

  Mr. BURGESS. Mr. Speaker, I would like to submit the following:

                  Dallas Healthcare Policy Conference

     Congressman Pete Sessions, Congressman Michael Burgess, MD., 
    Congressman John Fleming, MD, and Congressman Bill Cassidy, MD.

                        statement of principles

     Safety Net
       We support a healthcare safety net, which guarantees all 
     Americans access to healthcare that is consistently and 
     adequately funded by a rational system that ensures coverage 
     regardless of employment or economic status to encourage 
     maximum participation by physicians. Funding for this safety 
     net should be government subsidized without mandates.
     Patient/Doctor Relationship
       The sanctity of the patient-physician relationship must be 
     the foundation of healthcare in America and is the product of 
     every individual's right to choose. This bond is freely 
     chosen and based upon mutual trust, informed consent, and 
     privileged confidentiality involving every citizen. This 
     sacred trust must not be violated.
     Personal Responsibility
       In order to have a sustainable healthcare system every 
     patient has to have a personal investment in the cost and 
     maintenance of their care. The patient should be empowered to 
     responsibly choose the best use of their health care 
     Choice (Physicians and Patients)
       Patients are entitled to the maximum possible freedoms in 
     choosing how to care for themselves and their families. 
     Physicians and healthcare professionals are entitled to the 
     maximum possible freedoms in choosing how they provide care 
     for their patients, manage their practice, and compete in the 
     Privacy (Digital and EMR)
       Privacy must stand at the core of the trusted and 
     inviolable patient/physician relationship in order to 
     maximize the quality of care we provide our patients. 
     Patient's personal information, particularly digital, must be 
     protected. That information must be owned by the patient. It 
     is the only the patients' to share with their informed 
     consent and must be protected from all third parties 
     including the government.
     Patient Ownership/Portability
       Health insurance may be purchased across state lines 
     consistent with interstate commerce. Each American deserves 
     the opportunity to own their individual healthcare policy 
     with guaranteed renewability and community rating that is 
     appropriate for their family needs, not contingent upon a 
     specific job, and irrevocable except by personal choice or 
     cases of fraud.
     Payment and Price Transparency
       Transparency should be encouraged by all those who 
     participate in the healthcare marketplace. It is the 
     patient's right to know the cost of care and the payment 
     provided by insurance or government. It is the core of the 
     free market for consumers and professionals to know the true 
     costs and prices of all goods and services provided.
     Funding (Premium Support/Defined Contributions)
       Individual citizens should be permitted to own a Health 
     Liberty Account (HLA) that may receive defined contributions 
     from employer or government, or a tax-deductible contribution 
     from any source, that is dedicated to the purchase of 
     healthcare coverage and payment for healthcare services. 
     Those unable to fund their own HLA would be eligible for 
     adequate funding for annual healthcare coverage with a 
     defined contribution from the government.
     Tax Parity (Deductions)
       The purchase of health benefits are should be tax 
     deductible whether purchased by the employer or individual, 
     regardless of income. Charitable healthcare should be a tax 
     deductible item by the physician.
     Fraud, Waste and Abuse (Inefficiency)
       Physicians are committed to protecting the taxpayers by 
     stopping fraud (e.g. phantom billing, home health, and 
     medical equipment fraud) and considering methods to 
     accomplish this goal, including smart cards. Physicians are 
     committed to strengthening and reinvigorating the peer review 
     system. Physicians and their professional scientific 
     organizations should continue to seek efficiencies by 
     eliminating wasteful healthcare spending that does not 
     improve outcomes.
     Liability Reform
       The fear of lawsuits drives up the cost of medical care due 
     to the practice of defensive medicine. Tort reform will lower 
     inefficient spending and help to ease the upward pressure on 
     healthcare costs. Examples of such reforms include caps on 
     non-economic damages and the formation of expert medical 
     panels to evaluate and when indicated compensate significant 
     adverse outcomes to eliminate costly litigation.