By Brian Loschiavo
September 17, 2009

Everywhere you look in the media, health care is being discussed. Have you tuned it out? Have you ever tuned it in? Do you say to yourself, It’s too complicated to pay attention? Or do you reject or accept anything Obama says?

Well health care is something that students in college should pay attention to, because when we graduate, figuring out our own health care will be one of our first post-college dilemmas.

President Obama’s new health care plan has caused heavy debate and controversy. As citizens of the United States, we all need to come together and realize what is best for our country and each individual person. We need to make sure that we are staying informed about what is going on with health care because it is too important to go unnoticed.

President Obama recently explained in his joint session with Congress and made three main points: that his plan will bring more security and stability to those who already have health insurance, provide coverage for those who don’t and lower costs of health care for families and businesses.

Obama has already made some progress starting this past February when he signed the Children’s Health Insurance Reauthorization Act, which provides health care to 11 million kids, 4 million of them previously uninsured. He also put the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act into action, which protects health care for those who have lost their jobs.

The administration contends that the comprehensive health care reform that is being debated now should reduce long-term growth of health care costs for businesses and government, protect families from bankruptcy or debt because of health care cost and guarantee choice of doctors and health plans.

It will also invest in prevention and wellness, improve patient safety and quality of care, assure affordable, quality health coverage for all Americans, maintain coverage when you change or lose your job and end barriers to coverage for people with pre-existing medical conditions.

The United States spent approximately $2.2 trillion on health care in 2007, which is around $7,421 per person. With all the money that we spend on health care, families should not have to have impossible discussions choosing between putting food on the table or paying health care premiums. Hopefully, with this new plan, none of us will ever have to deal with that type of situation, making these types of decisions.

College students need to realize that health care could be a huge worry after college. Once students graduate there is a small window of time until they need to get their own insurance. In most cases it is extremely expensive and in some cases impossible to get if they have or had some major illness.

All of us need to stop tuning this debate out. We need to stop listening to talk-show sound bites. We need to put aside our political prejudices. We really need to learn what is being proposed, hear moderate voices with a variety of views and make up our own minds.

Then, we need to write our members of Congress with our own well-informed views. This is an issue that will affect us for the rest of our lives so we need to have a good understanding of what is going on and take action.

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Brian Loschiavo

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