Issues '08: Health Care

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Senators Obama and McCain on the campaign trail. (AP)
Senators Obama and McCain on the campaign trail. (Photos: AP)

But the issues on the campaign trail are titanic, too — and none bigger than the health care challenge facing this country. Costs out of control, and tens of millions of Americans with no health care coverage. None. Zero.

John McCain and Barack Obama have very different ideas for what to do.

This hour, On Point: Financial crisis and a stark choice on health care.

You can join the conversation. Will the health care issue decide your vote? Is government the solution, or the market, or both? Can the country afford to fix health care now, with a financial meltdown and huge deficits? We want to hear your thoughts.Guests:

Joining us from Washington for an update on the bailout package is Gail Chaddock, congressional reporter for the Christian Science Monitor.

Also from Washington, we're joined by Julie Rovner, health policy correspondent for NPR and author of "Health Care Politics and Policy A to Z."

Joining us in our studio is David Cutler, a professor of economics at Harvard University and chief health care advisor to Barack Obama. You can read Obama's health care policies here.

And joining us from Washington is Gail Wilensky. An economist and senior fellow at Project HOPE, an international health education foundation, she's an adviser to John McCain’s campaign and a contributor to the McCain health care plan. You can read the McCain plan here. She is a commissioner on the World Health Organization’s Commission on the Social Determinants of Health, and was an adviser to President George H.W. Bush on health and welfare policy.

More links:
The journal Health Affairs published a critique of the Obama and McCain plans last week. See an overview and links to media analysis of the critique on the Health Affairs blog.
The Kaiser Family Foundation's election site,, offers this side-by-side summary of the two candidates' health care proposals.

This program aired on September 24, 2008.


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