Ezra Klein of The American Prospect (and soon to be of the Washington Post) has the scoop about how Senator Baucus has distributed work around health reform to his fellow Senators.
Jay Rockefeller: Medicaid Expansion, Premium Subsidies, Quality Improvements
Kent Conrad: Comparative Effectiveness, Chronic Care Management
Jeff Bingaman: Pay-for-Performance, Bundled Payments, IHS
John Kerry: Heath Information Technology, Exchange, Small Business Tax Credit
Blanche Lincoln: Small-Group Rating Reforms, Small Business Tax Credit
Ron Wyden: Tax Exclusion, Non-Group Rating Reform
Chuck Schumer: Public Plan
Debbie Stabenow: Employer Pay-or-Play, Medicare Buy-in, HIT
Maria Cantwell: Long-Term Care Reform, Workforce Issues
Bill Nelson: Graduate Medical Education, Medicare Part D
Bob Menendez: Disparities, Individual Requirement
Tom Carper: Fraud and Abuse, Prevention and Wellness, Transparency
This gives a welcome sense that they are getting into the nitty-gritty of the details of health reforms, even if one wonders about how they are dividing the work, how these aspects will be integrated, and why certain topics are included in the first place.
These assignements got particular attention when Senator Schumer asked questions about the inclusion and specifics of a public health insurance option–which was reported as both that Senator Schumer was defending the concept, and that he was proposing a compromise. Richard Kirsch at the Health Care for America Now blog clarifies the confusion.