May 7: Register by MONDAY to attend ‘Concierge Care for the Little Guy,” the Foundation’s 8.a.m. Leadership Breakfast at the Cobb Galleria Centre. Dr. Lee Gross, co-founder of Epiphany Health, a Direct Primary Care company, will explain how individuals can afford coverage and care. This event is open to the public and is $25 to attend. Find out more and register at http://bit.ly/1gRToJZ.
Health Care Forum May 7: At its May 7-9 Forum at the Galleria Centre, the Institute for Healthcare Consumerism hosts the first face-to-face “Great Debate” between two of the nation’s most influential health care experts, John Goodman, a key thought leader for free market solutions and Dr. Kenneth Thorpe, who worked in the Clinton administration on “HillaryCare” and has been key resource to most every Democratic presidential nominee during the last 20 years. For a special price of $159, Foundation members can attend the events of Wednesday, May 7. This includes a four-hour pre-conference presentation, “Physicians Report on State of Health Care in America,” by Docs 4 Patient Care; the Great Debate and the Opening Night Reception. Find out more at http://www.theihccforum.com/
May 14: Register to attend “Climbing the Ladder: Overcoming Obstacles to Achieving the American Dream,” a forum Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at 6:30 p.m. at the Georgia Pacific Auditorium, 133 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30303. Hosted by the Charles Koch Institute, the panel’s participants include the Foundation’s Benita Dodd, who grew up in South Africa under apartheid. Find out more at http://charleskochinstitute.org/econopps/.
Quotes of Note
“[I]f we wish to preserve a free society, it is essential that we recognize that the desirability of a particular object is not sufficient justification for the use of coercion.” – Friedrich A. Hayek
“With all the political talk about ‘patient-centeredness’ during the current health care reform, may I suggest that patients need to be given more choice about how their health care dollars are spent. With limited choice and no responsibility, patients tend to feel entitled and deprived at the same time.” – A Country Doctor
“France, where a cozy elite runs government and large corporations, has a 75 percent top income tax rate and essentially zero economic growth. Is that the future American liberals want?” – Michael Barone
“American governance over the centuries has shifted from state’s rights to federal power. Now the states are evolving into little nations. State-nations … For example, Florida’s population is about to surpass New York’s. Georgia has 10 million people, or twice the number of Ireland’s, its ports would make several czars salivate, its three leading universities rank among the nation’s greatest, and its capital is a vast metropolis. Now these state-nations want some of their power back.” – Joe Ledlie
Energy and Environment
Greenspace benefits: Critics like to call metro Atlanta the poster child for sprawl; we like to think of it as a role model for personal greenspace. One more reason to enjoy the region’s tree canopy: A new study from the University of Wisconsin in Madison reveals that people who live near trees and green spaces report lower levels of stress, anxiety and depression than those in more concrete- and asphalt-lined neighborhoods. Source: San Francisco Chronicle
Building a better peanut: A group of multinational crop geneticists has successfully sequenced the peanut’s genome. The International Peanut Genome Initiative was chaired by Scott Jackson, director of the University of Georgia Center for Applied Genetic Technologies in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. The new genome sequence will aid in the breeding of more productive and more resilient peanut varieties. Source: University of Georgia
Moving on funding? President Barack Obama sent a four-year, $302 billion, 350-page transportation plan to Congress this week as Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx warned that the Highway Trust Fund will run dry in August. A promising development is that the bill would also encourage states to toll existing capacity on federal interstates to fund repairs or replacement. Many interstates are past their 50-year life expectancy and in need of costly, substantial repairs and upgrades. For more about the bill, read here. Read Benita Dodd’s op-ed in Sunday’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution on transportation proposals for Georgia.Source: Associated Press
Paying the piper: The Obama administration announced that more than 8 million had signed up for coverage under the Affordable Care Act’s exchanges by the deadline. The number is in dispute – and experts are already worried, according to Michael Cannon of the Cato Institute. “An estimated third of those who sign up for exchange plans haven’t paid their first premium. In Texas, an estimated 58 percent haven’t paid. As many as 5 percent stop paying after the first month. Rising premiums and skimpy coverage may lead even more enrollees to drop out.” Worse, “Obamacare itself makes it safer and more attractive than ever for healthy people to drop their coverage and wait until they get sick to re-enroll.” Source: Orange County Register
Concierge care: The American Academy of Private Physicians estimates that there are now about 4,400 concierge physicians, 30 percent more than last year. A recent survey found that 7-10 percent of physicians planned to transition to concierge or cash-only practices in the next one to three years. With doctors already spending 22 percent of their time on nonclinical paperwork, they will find ObamaCare regulations taking even more time away from patient care. (The Foundation’s May 7 event is about concierge care.)Source: Wall Street Journal
Foundation in the News: The Savannah Morning News turned an April 18 Friday Fact on Georgia philanthropy into an entire editorial that was shared statewide!
Web site of the week: Former Atlantan Dave Scott relocated to sunny Fernandina Beach, Fla., near Amelia Island. Find his blog at www.davescottblog.com. His witty news and views are worth the read, and not just because he mentions the Foundation on a regular basis.
Social media:The Foundation has more than 2,240 “likes” on Facebook and 1,182 Twitter followers!
The Forum: In Benita Dodd’s Checking Up on Health, she shares news about the folly behind “perfect attendance” awards and telemedicine overregulation. Read these and other recent posts at georgiapolicy.org/category/the-forum/.
Have a great weekend!
Kelly McCutchen and Benita Dodd
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The Georgia Public Policy Foundation has hit another homerun with its Guide to the Issues. This is must reading for anyone interested in public policy in Georgia, and it is an outstanding road map for conservative, common sense solutions to our challengers of today and tomorrow.