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Presidential Candidates Must Shape Health Reform Platforms Now

Presidential contenders are starting to announce their candidacies for the 2020 election, which means it's also time for them to commit to their health reform plans. In a column for STAT, Commonwealth Fund President David Blumenthal, M.D., says the window for health care reform closes just six months into a new presidency.

The temptation for Democrats will be to embrace "Medicare for all," he says. But other, possibly more politically viable alternatives exist, such as building on the Affordable Care Act through options to buy into Medicare or Medicaid. For Republicans, the path forward will be much easier, Blumenthal says, if their candidate in 2020 — likely to be the sitting president — runs on a well-defined health care position that telegraphs where he intends to take the nation.

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