The Facts

Although Senate Democrats recently lost their filibuster-proof supermajority, President Obama reiterated in his January 27, 2010, State of the Union address that he is intent on achieving health reform this year. The president exhorted Congress not to “run for the hills,” and invited Congress to instead “come together and finish the job for the American people.” In an effort to encourage Republicans and Democrats to work together, the president invited congressional leaders to a bipartisan, half-day summit on health reform on February 25, 2010. Click here for the president’s invitation letter and invitation list.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi proclaimed: “You go through the gate. If the gate’s closed, you go over the fence. If the fence is too high, we’ll pole-vault in. If that doesn’t work, we’ll parachute in. But we’re going to get health care reform passed for the American people.” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s spokesman underscored these sentiments, stating: "We remain confident we will pass health reform this year.”

Whether comprehensive legislation, piecemeal legislation or no health reform legislation is passed this year will affect not only the health sector and health care consumers, but also the mid-term elections this November.

What’s at Stake

Given the comprehensive nature of health reform legislation, every aspect of health care is at stake.

Steps to Consider

Providers, plans, pharmaceutical manufacturers, device makers, and all in the health sector or affected by the health sector, including health care consumers, should continue to carefully monitor the progress of the health reform debate and evaluate the impact of the various proposals.