Senate Committee Moves Forward On Plans To Mark Up Kennedy Health Reform Proposal Tomorrow As Democratic Senator Conrad Pushes Coop Alternative To Public Health Plans

As the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) prepares to mark up session the comprehensive health care reform proposal in “Affordable Health Choices Act” floated by Senator Kennedy last week, Democratic Senator Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) is pushing alternative legislation providing for nonprofit cooperatives owned and operated by their members, to compete with private insurers rather than the Obama backed public plan option. See Conrad’s Proposed Solution.

The top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), said that the Conrad proposal had “possibilities.” Meanwhile, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) told Reuters that Conrad’s proposal could be a suitable compromise for resolving Republican concerns over a government-sponsored plan while addressing Democratic calls for more competition in the insurance market.

However, Senator Kennedy and other leading Democrats continue to push for a public plan option.  For instance, Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) told Reuters a public-plan option that competes with private insurance and follows the same rules as private insurance is the only real way to provide access to good, affordable health insurance to all Americans.  See more about where members of Congress stand here.

President Obama and key Congressional Democrats are moving quickly to enact their vision for “comprehensive health reform” this year.  Last week, Senator Kennedy circulated a 625 page redraft of the “Affordable Health Choices Act” which among other thing includes a public plan option, would impose numerous private plan mandates, and would reallocate control over heath care quality and other matters to federal regulators.  In furtherance of plans to fast track enactment of his view of health care reform, the Senate HELP Committee chaired by Senator Kennedy will hold a hearing on the Act tomorrow, June 16, beginning at 2:30 p.m. in Russell 325.

Individuals concerned about these and other proposed health care reforms must act immediately to become familiar and share their input on the proposals.

Assistance Monitoring & Responding To Health Care Reform Proposals

If you or someone else you know would like to receive updates about health care reform proposals and other related legislative, regulatory, and enforcement developments, please:

  • Register for this resource at the link above;
  • Join the Coalition for Responsible Health Policy group at to share information and input;
  • Share your input by communicating with key members of Congress on committees responsible for this legislation and your elected officials directly and by actively participating in and contributing to other like-minded groups; and
  • Be sure that we have your current contact information – including your preferred e-mail- by creating or updating your profile at here

You can register to receive future updates on legislative and regulatory health care reform proposals and other related information by registering for this resource or access other publications by Ms. Stamer and access other helpful resources here.

Long-time health policy advocate and advisor Cynthia Marcotte Stamer has more than 22 years of experience advising and assisting clients to evaluate and respond to health care reform proposals and other proposed or adopted changes in federal or state health care, employee benefit, employment, tax and other federal and state laws.  Former Chair of the American Bar Association’s Managed Care & Insurance Section, Ms. Stamer is highly regarded legal advisor, policy advocate, author and speaker recognized both nationally and internationally for her more than 20 years of work assisting U.S. public and private employers, health care providers, health insurers, and a broad range of other clients to respond to these and other health care, employee benefit and workforce public policy, regulatory and compliance and risk management concerns within the U.S. as well as internationally.  Her work includes extensive involvement providing input and assistance about health care, workforce, pensions and social security and other reforms domestically and internationally.  In addition to her continuous involvement in U.S. health care, pensions and savings, and workforce policy matters, Ms. Stamer has served as an advisor on these matters internationally.  As part of this work, she served as a lead advisor to the Government of Bolivia on its social security reform as well as has provided input on ethics, medical tourism, workforce and other reforms internationally.

Ms. Stamer is a widely published author and popular speaker on health plan and other human resources, employee benefits and internal controls issues.   Her work has been featured and published by the American Bar Association, BNA, SHRM, World At Work, Employee Benefit News and the American Health Lawyers Association.  Her insights on human resources risk management matters have been quoted in The Wall Street Journal, the Dallas Business Journal, Managed Care Executive, HealthLeaders, Business Insurance, Employee Benefit News and the Dallas Morning News.

Ms. Stamer also serves in a number of professional leadership roles including the leadership council of the ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits, Vice Chair of the ABA Real Property, Probate & Trust Section and Employee Benefits & Compensation Group.

If your organization needs assistance with monitoring, assessing, or responding to these or other health care, employee benefit or human resources reforms,  please contact Ms. Stamer via e-mail here, or by calling (214) 270-2402.  For additional information about the experience, services, publications and involvements of Ms. Stamer specifically or to access some of her many publications, see here

Additional Resources & Information

We hope that this information is useful to you. For additional information about the experience, services, publications and involvements of Ms. Stamer specifically or to access some of her many publications, see here.  

©2009 Cynthia Marcotte Stamer. All rights reserved.