A healthy Virginia is vital for our economy to grow and prosper. We have a healthcare system that is too costly, and people have to make healthcare decisions based on bureaucracy rather than the benefit. Insurance rates under the Affordable Care Act are rising by more than 16 percent this year. It’s a feeling many of us have experienced: We’re anxious about getting the healthcare we know we need because we don’t know how much it will cost. The cost of Virginia’s healthcare safety net programs are also rising rapidly. Every dollar put into these programs is a dollar we can’t spend on K-12 or higher education or other important priorities. The challenge for Virginia’s next governor will be to get costs under control, give consumers more choices and reform our safety net programs so we can take care of those who need the most help in a cost effective manner.
I will work to reduce healthcare costs and make sure patients are in charge of healthcare decisions. I will make sure every dollar we put into the system is accountable to outcomes that will improve health and reduce bureaucratic hurdles. We will seek innovative solutions that expand access to primary healthcare services and utilize technology to make our healthcare system smarter. We will reform our safety net programs to reduce fraud and inefficiencies so we can control costs. We can make Virginia a healthier place to live, care for our neighbors in need, and strengthen our economy.