Fresh off his success getting Congress to pass legislation to help find jobs for returning Iraq and Afghanistan vets, the next stage in President Obama’s push for jobs bill is a similar $1 billion measure to hire, train, and deploy healthcare workers.
The Obama administration will announce Monday as much as $1 billion in funding to hire, train and deploy health-care workers, part of the White House’s broader “We Can’t Wait” agenda to bolster the economy after President Obama’s jobs bill stalled in Congress.
Grants can go to doctors, community groups, local government and other organizations that work with patients in federal health-care programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. The funds are for experimenting with different ways to expand the health-care workforce while reducing the cost of delivering care. There will be an emphasis on speed, with new programs expected to be running within six months of funding.
“This will open the inbox for many innovators and organizations that have an idea to bring to the table,” Don Berwick, administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, said in an interview. “We’re seeking innovators, organizations and leaders that have an idea to bring into further testing.”
On the surface, this seems like exactly the kind of program Republicans want in their approach to health care: venture capitalism for the doctors, hospitals, and medical device corporations to find better real-world solutions to lower Medicare and Medicaid costs. The reality is I fully expect Republicans to scream “Obamacare!” and unanimously vote against it because they are fully in the grip of The Crazy.
The fact of the matter is after Friday’s Senate vote to approve a jobs measure for veterans, the Tea Party will expect their wishes to be heeded on this, and you should expect to see a number of Republicans dismiss the measure as part of the President’s evil death panel machine or whatever.
It would be outstanding if I’m wrong on this preemptive hoocodanode, but I don’t think I will be. All that matters to the GOP is that Obama must be defeated so they can repeal this “horrible assault on our liberty” so we can die from not being able to afford healthcare like the Founding Fathers wanted, then turn around and pass the same legislation with the word “Freedom” in the title.