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Political Scientist Makes the Case for a Public Option
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The Yale Political Scientist who coined the term "Public Option" says the health care bill signed into law this week is historic, but it doesn't go far enough.  WNPR's John Dankosky reports. 

Jacob Hacker's been fighting to get his brainchild included in the federal health care reform package, but without success.  He told WNPR's Where We Live that in the future, it's the only way to bring down costs in the long term, and bring administrative sanity to the health care system. 

"I'm very concerned about the degree to which the implementation of this legislation is left up to the states and to private insurers.  There should be a choice within these new exchanges of a public insurance plan that competes on a level playing field with private insurance."

Hacker says many regions of the country already have a de facto "single payer system" - because the health care markets there are left to only one or two insurers.  He says a public option would increase competition and drive down costs. 

Despite his reservations, Hacker says the law provides transparency for consumers, and important accountability measures for insurers, by limiting the amount of administrative spending that can be tied to premium costs. 

For WNPR, I'm John Dankosky.