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PNS Daily Newscast - August 14, 2020 


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Groups To McCollum: "Not in Our Name, Not On Our Dime"

April 20, 2010

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - As part of what supporters are calling the "Not in Our Name, Not on our Dime" campaign, Florida health care advocates will petition Attorney General Bill McCollum today to drop his federal lawsuit opposing the national health care reform law. The petition has nearly 7500 signatures and a letter representing more than half a million Floridians.

Greg Mellowe, policy director for Florida CHAIN, says his is one of 37 groups protesting what he calls an unjustifiable lawsuit that would deny coverage to Florida's uninsured, stop preventive care to seniors, and block tax credits to small businesses for insuring employees.

"We're delivering petitions that ask Attorney General McCollum to refrain from litigation that is just a waste of taxpayer money and really works against the people of Florida, all of whom would benefit in some way from this health care reform legislation."

Mellowe says if McCollum's efforts are successful, it would deny coverage to Florida's uninsured, who often get care in emergency rooms instead of doctor's offices.

"There are almost four million uninsured Floridians who, when they need coverage have to pursue coverage in the most expensive and least timely way, and that gets passed on to all of us. "

Pediatrician Dr. Louis St. Petery, who supports reform, says an ER visit costs four times as much as a visit to a doctor's office, but Florida children on Medicaid have had little choice because it costs more to treat them than doctors were paid.

"They'll go to the emergency room because fewer and fewer pediatricians are willing to take the financial loss to see Medicaid kids. The feds have recognized that with health reform by increasing the payment rate. That should make a big difference in the lives of children."

Florida Attorney General McCollum filed suit within hours of the Congressional vote, claiming health care reform was "unconstitutional" based on its requirement that everyone buy health insurance, and saying it was too expensive to implement.

Gina Presson , Public News Service - FL