April 22, 2014 at 8:00 AM
SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- The second annual Geri Smith Republican Scotch Plains Spring Conference featured a panel discussion at the Scotch Hills Country Club with U.S. Representative Leonard Lance (NJ-07) and Dr. Alieta Eck, who is running to replace retiring Rush Holt in the 12th District of the House of Representatives.
Rep. Lance stressed that he had voted to repeal Obamacare and predicts that next year the Senate will rescind the Affordable Healthcare Act. He also expressed confidence that Governor Chris Christie could be a strong Presidential candidate for the Republicans in 2016.
“The approach this year is to continue to control the House and gain control of the Senate,” Lance explained. “We want to prove to the American people that the Republicans can run the Senate.”
Dr. Eck focused on the healthcare struggles of New Jersey residents such as Debra Pasnak, a 51-yr.-old woman who two weeks ago walked for the first time in more than three years after suffering from chronic hip problems.
Pasnak was 48 when she broke her hip, femur, pelvic bone and kneecap in an in-house accident. She was bounced around by Medicaid and visited numerous physicians throughout the state before Dr. Eck helped her find a surgeon.
“No one wanted to take her case because it was too complicated of a procedure to repair the leg,” explained Dr. Eck, who currently owns a private medical practice in Piscataway, NJ. “I want healthcare for all and I believe there are better ways than Obamacare,”
Dr. Eck, who previously testified before the Joint Economic Committee of Congress about better ways to deliver healthcare, discussed her recommendations to change existing healthcare policies and her alternative to Obamacare, which could potentially save up to $3 billion of New Jersey’s Medicaid expenses. Her healthcare vision focuses on ‘trading protection for care.’ Such a system would require physicians to donate four hours a week in free care in exchange for the state to provide full medical malpractice coverage, a high cost for physicians.
“This type of coverage is already provided for physicians who work or teach in medical school university hospitals,” Dr. Eck explained.
In 2003, she and her husband, Dr. John Eck, founded the Zarephath Health Center, a non-governmental free public clinic for the poor and uninsured. The center cares for approximately 300-400 patients monthly using the donated services of volunteer physicians and nurses.