Freudenthal Says It's Time To Get Serious About Health Care Reform

At a news conference Wednesday, Governor Dave Freudenthal said that Wyoming cannot wait for the federal government to fix healthcare, and suggested that the State Legislature strongly consider a proposal before a house committee this week.

A bill sponsored by Senator Charles Scott from Casper would do just that, as the pilot program described in the bill would help up to 500 low-income working people identify chronic conditions before they blossom into catastrophes.

Last year the Wyoming House rejected a similar measure after the Senate had given its approval. The Governor said there was no reason to do so then and there is none now.

Freudenthal said that Senator Scott's bill would help reduce healthcare costs several ways, pointing out that catching diseases and chronic conditions earlier saves money throughout patient treatment, and that requiring participants in the program to contribute toward their insurance moves part of the financial burden from government to the individual. The program would be paid for with $1 million from tobacco settlement funds.

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