All Minnesotans deserve access to quality, affordable healthcare. Our current health care system is flooded with waste, inefficiency, and administrative expenses. Many patients in Minnesota struggle to afford medications and needed care. As a physician, these are the changes I want to make as a legislator:
- Medical decisions should be made by patients in discussion with their providers, not by government. As a physician, I understand the importance of the doctor-patient relationship.
- Lowering the cost of prescription drugs. Insulin and other life-saving medications must be affordable to all who need them. Here is an opinion article I wrote in the Shakopee Valley News published Saturday, Jan 25, 2020.
- Reforming whistleblower laws to better protect health care employees trying to report legitimate threats to public health and patient well-being.
- A MinnesotaCare buy-in program would make an affordable, high quality network of care accessible to all individuals, and help Minnesota address the rising costs of healthcare.
- Reduce health care overhead expenditures: Health care dollars should be spent on patient care, not on endless administration or giveaways to insurance companies.
- More time spent on coding and billing than on patient care, by far. Hospitals that can't recruit a single doctor or enough nurses will have entire departments that do these things.
- Requiring health care providers to provide accurate cost estimates and alternatives to patients before asking patients to make medical decisions.
Mental Health Services
Minnesota's mental health care system is broken down. As your representative I will fight to change this. I have the insider experience to know exactly what needs to be addressed, and how.
- Drastic shortage of psychiatric hospital beds and doctors. Patients treated in jails by police, in courts by judges, in hospitals by stressed-out non-medical employees.
- Wasteful practices like sending patients by ambulance across the entire state for an open hospital bed.
- Rising societal rates of suicide, substance abuse, and childhood disorders. Insufficient research about why.
- A culture where care is provided according to the demands of insurance companies, rather than what's best for patients and supported by medical science. Separating medication treatment from counseling and talk therapy, purposely requiring useless paperwork at every visit, frustrating micro-appointments that last only a few minutes, and limiting available medications to a tiny fraction of what exists.
- Overprescription of powerful medications to children and adults, while ignoring underlying problems.
- Problems in DHS, including a complete breakdown in care at the Minnesota Security Hospital, resulting in patients being murdered, dangerous patients escaping, frequent staff injuries.
- Time and money wasted trying to synch outdated laws, policies and payments across Minnesota's 87 counties.
Minnesotans expect and deserve the best quality education. Our job growth and economic prosperity depend on investing in world class education for all Minnesota students. Shortages, cutbacks and funding gaps do not serve Minnesota students or society.
- I believe we need to prioritize educational funding of public schools so that all students have access to the best quality education.
- I support universal pre-K education so that all kids are off to a healthy start when they enter kindergarten.
- Our kids are our future. I believe in providing fair pay for the teachers who guide their development and learning.
- Higher education should not involve crushing debt, or a one-size fits all, four-year college approach. A skilled and diverse workforce requires us to provide a variety of affordable and accessible options.