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— In a GOP Doctors Caucus hearing last week, U.S. Rep. John Boozman, RArk., an optometrist, and other Republican House members in the healthcare profession offered their knowledge of health care.

Among caucus members, there was a consensus that health-care billsnow under consideration in Congress are too expensive and will hit the middle class and business ownerstoo hard, Boozman said.

“We agree that we need reform, but we need commonsense reform. (But) right now, the danger is we’re going to throw out all the good about our healthcare system … in an effort to fix the bad. What we’re seeing right now is not the answer. It’s very, very expensive, and there’s nothing in the bills that prevents the expense from continuing to rise,” Boozman said. “So we’ve got to contain health-care costs.”

Reform needs to focus on providing affordable health care, on portability of health-care insurance and on discouraging nuisance malpractice suits, he said.

With his constituents, proposed health-care reform is still the No. 1 topic of correspondence for his office, Boozman said.

In addition to Boozman,members of the GOP Doctors Caucus included Reps. Phil Gingrey of Georgia, Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania, Michael Burgess of Texas, Paul Broun of Georgia, John Fleming of Louisiana, Tom Price of Georgia and Phil Roe of Tennessee.

In addition to practicing physicians, the hearing featured economic experts on healthcare legislation.

Testifying were DouglasHoltz-Eakin, former director of the Congressional Budget Office; Dr. M. Todd Williamson, the immediate past president of the Medical Association of Georgia; Dr. Jerry L. Miller, family practice/internal medicine of Holston Medical Group of Tennessee; and Dr. Robert De-Jesus, a gastroenterologist from Westmoreland Gastroenterology Association of Pennsylvania.

News, Pages 6 on 11/04/2009

Print Headline: Doctors Caucus weighs in on health-care debate

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