Bulletin Staff Report

Congressman Mike Conaway has scheduled a “town hall” meeting in Brownwood at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 3, to discuss the ongoing health care debate with area citizens.

The meeting will be held at the Dorothy McIntosh Fine Arts Center Auditorium at Brownwood High School.

“I want to encourage everyone in the Brownwood area who is interested in discussing the current health care legislation to come out to the town hall meeting,” Conaway said. “It is essential that Congress take the time to get this right to ensure that the doctor-patient relationship is protected, quality is ensured, and our system becomes more cost efficient.

“I vehemently oppose any plan that puts Washington bureaucrats between patients and the health care that they need and deserve,” Conaway said. “I stand with the majority of the American people and demand that we propose real solutions to get our economy back on track and reform this wonderful nation’s health care system.”

In a statement prepared for a Tea Party rally Saturday in Brownwood, Conaway wrote that while he agrees with the president’s assessment that the nation’s health care systems need work, he is fundamentally opposed to the vision the president has laid out.

“We must fundamentally rethink the government’s involvement with health care,” Conaway wrote. Reform should first seek to contain the annual increase in health care costs that at 8 percent is roughly double the historic annual incease in the nation’s GDP, he added.

Conaway said he is spending August meeting with doctors, hospital adminisrators, patients and insurers to talk about the proposal and to learn from providers of what would work best.