In 1991, fewer than one percent of Americans felt that health care was an important issue. Just two years later, President Clinton urged Congress to help him fix a health care system that "is badly broken" (Collins 78). Is the health care system badly broken? The health care reform debate has captured the attention of all Americans. What brought health care reform into the public spotlight? Although our medical care in this country is of the highest quality, our access to that care is waning due to higher and higher costs. Our health care system needs fundamental reform. Currently, there are dozens of reform packages in Congress, yet three packages offer significant recommendations toward health care reform: President Clinton's Health Security Act, Representative Jim Cooper's Managed Competition Act, and Senator John Chaffee's Health Equity and Reform Access Today Act. The final health care reform package must include the choice aspects of all three of these proposals.
One aspect which must be included in health care reform is the elimination of insurance bias. Too many Americans are uninsured because of pre-existing conditions. Insurance providers should no longer be allowed to cover only the healthiest persons. Never again should an employer feel the need to fire a worker because of an illness which raises health insurance premiums. There are two important steps toward eliminating insurance bias. The first step is making portability of insurance a reality. Right now in this country, 28% of working Americans are unable to change jobs because they would lose their coverage and be denied coverage with another company due to pre-existing conditions (U.S. Health 56). For example, Marcia and Mark Callendar both had good jobs with good benefits. They thought their family was well-protected by the insurance provided by Mark's employer. Then their son, Matthew,