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GOP Pounds Berwick In Hearing On Health Care

This article is more than 8 years old.
It would be no surprise if Don Berwick, at one time an even-tempered Harvard pediatrician, is now questioning his decision to become the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in the rough-and-tumble era of national health reform.

Today, according to a report in The Boston Globe, Berwick got "pounded" by House Republicans who finally got their chance to grill him during testimony at a Ways and Means Committee hearing on health care. Here's an excerpt of the exchange, in which Berwick staunchly defends the new law:

Under pointed questioning, Berwick was unflappable and sounded enthusiastic, even while frustrating Republicans by refusing to offer a “yes” or “no” answer to many questions.

In one exchange, Committee Chairman Dave Camp, a Michigan Republican, pressed Berwick repeatedly on Berwick’s past praise for the British health care system.

“Is the British health care system a good model?” Camp asked.

“The American health care system needs an American solution,” Berwick replied.

Camp persisted, asking: Do you still think a government-run single payer system is the best option?

“I believe the Affordable Care Act is the right solution for America,” said Berwick.

“If I could have a simple yes or no answer?” said Camp.

He didn’t get one.

This program aired on February 10, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.

Rachel Zimmerman Twitter Health Reporter
Rachel Zimmerman previously reported on health and the intersection of health and business for Bostonomix.

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