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Health Care: How's It Going to Affect Me?

I've talked to health care economists, health care providers, insurance and pharmaceutical industry insiders and Americans of all income levels to discuss the current debate about health care reform. The consensus is clear: we need reform, but I/we don't want to bear too much of the burden.

This morning on The Early Show, Maggie Rodriguez and I examined the impact on three types of people to illustrate how, depending on individual circumstances, health care reform may impact different segments of the population. The general categories were: the uninsured, the small business owner and the high income earner.

You can see how everyone agrees that action is necessary, but getting there involves a number of moving pieces. That's why President Obama plans to deliver a prime time press conference tonight to address health care reform. He's going to have his hands full selling the plan.

President Obama must explain how the plan can offer Americans more choices and more security; remain deficit neutral; and keep long-term costs down, especially after Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director of the Congressional Budget Office released a report noting that the current House plan does little to cut health care expenses. Elmendorf wrote that by 2019, the plan would result "in a net increase in the deficit of an estimated $65 billion."

In a preview of what we might expect to hear tonight, last night on The CBS Evening News, Katie Couric spoke to President Obama about his fight for health care reform. (Go here for the full interview.)

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This post originally appeared The Financial Decoder blog on CBS Jill Schlesinger is the Editor-at-Large for CBS Prior to the launch of MoneyWatch, she was the Chief Investment Officer for an independent investment advisory firm. In her infancy, she was an options trader on the Commodities Exchange of New York.
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