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On April 17, a letter from the District 7 Chair of the State Employees Association of NC (SEANC) was published stating that House Bill 184 was bad for healthcare. The letter raised issues that are a concern to many of us. Undoubtedly, health care costs are too high, and a collaborative plan is needed to decrease those costs. However, the Clear Pricing Project proposed by State Treasurer Folwell is not the route to get us where we need to be.

While we support the intent of the Treasurer’s plan to decrease the costs of health care, it must be done in a planned and more measured approach. We must work together so that rural health care systems and the citizens they serve are not facing unintended consequences. The Treasurer’s current plan would cut millions of dollars from our local health care system, and not only impact many jobs in our community, but also could impact critical care that is provided close to our homes.

House Bill 184 is good for the health of our communities and will not stop progress in finding a solution to out-of-control medical costs. This bill simply proposes a delay in the Treasurer’s plan in order to allow time for all concerned parties to develop a plan that will decrease healthcare costs without compromising health care access for our citizens.

Many might not realize that as a not-for-profit system, revenue from Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge is immediately reinvested back into this community to continue serving our neighbors, not into a shareholder’s pocket. If those revenues are cut by the Treasurer’s plan, ultimately, cuts in life-saving medical services could follow. The Treasurer’s plan has the potential to compromise the health of the very people he seeks to protect.

Please ask Senator Warren Daniel to support HB 184 so that the right people can come together and work out a plan that is best for everyone.

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