Local News

August 28, 2013

Gingrey visits Dalton, slams the ‘Unaffordable Care Act’

Congressman Phil Gingrey, R-Marietta, is used to being around medical paraphernalia. The former obstetrician-gynecologist is now working to address medical problems of a different sort.

Gingrey, who represents the 11th Congressional District which neighbors the district that includes Whitfield and Murray counties, visited Hamilton Medical Center Tuesday as one of several stops in North Georgia while Congress is in recess this month. Gingrey also planned to visit Fort Oglethorpe, Ringgold, Jasper, Dahlonega and Rome as well as McDonough and Newnan further south.

Gingrey toured the lab at Hamilton Medical Center, saying that refreshing his memory and learning more about how things operate helps give him a better perspective back in Congress. Gingrey said he is against many of the principles in the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and wants to replace it with a different set of regulations.

“The American people for the most part are still unhappy with that,” he said of the federal law that is still being implemented. “They don’t like any interference with the doctor-nurse-patient relationship. They don’t feel, and I don’t feel, that you can treat a person’s health and indeed their very lives like it’s just some commodity in any other business. There’s a certain art to that. So we feel very strongly that we need to lower the cost of health care, we need to make if available to everybody, whether it’s Medicare or Medicaid for the poor or affordable health insurance for people that are out there either working for themselves or working for some big company. But it can be done in a much better way than this so called Affordable — or I call it the ‘Unaffordable Care Act.’”

Gingrey is also campaigning for U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss’ seat. Chambliss retires in 2014.

“I think it should be a market-driven health care system where patients own their own health insurance policies, they’re not necessarily tied to a job,” Gingrey said. “... Medical liability insurance reform is something President Obama promised when he was campaigning. Absolutely, I would be in favor of that. In fact, I’ve introduced that particular bill in Congress about five different times. It always passes the House, but we have not been able to get it through the Senate. But we will continue to work on that, and I will continue to work to try to replace Obamacare with a market-driven health care approach.”

Dr. Kathryn Knight, medical director of the laboratory at Hamilton, said having someone in Gingrey’s position visit the hospital is valuable. Knight and other staff members spoke with the congressman during the visit to voice concerns about proposed funding cuts from the government office that oversees Medicare and Medicaid as well as other ongoing regulatory issues.

Knight said some people forget how important medical lab work is in health care.

“The laboratory is only approximately 3 percent of the total cost of the health system, but the data that comes from the laboratory leads to approximately 70 percent of clinical decision-making.”

Knight said several other political leaders have visited the lab in recent years, including then-congressman Nathan Deal, and congressmen Tom Graves and Tom Price and U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson.

Text Only
Local News
  • runner thompson.jpg Taking the race back

    Dean Thompson didn’t go 100 yards in his 26.2 miles through the streets of Boston without seeing people on the side of the road cheering for him.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bobby Lee Dixon mg.jpg Officials: Man jailed for driving toward officer

    A Chatsworth man who officials said accelerated a vehicle toward a law enforcement officer who was approaching on foot remains in the Murray County jail without bond.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Standoff 1 mlh.jpg Charges undetermined following standoff (Updated 5:45 p.m.)

    Police have yet to decide whether to press criminal charges against a man they say was armed and intoxicated while barricading himself in his office at a carpet mill in downtown Dalton Tuesday evening.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Man charged for using fraudulent Social Security card

    A man is being held in the Whitfield County Jail on multiple charges for using a fraudulent Social Security card with someone else’s Social Security number to land a job at a rug manufacturer in Dalton and for providing false information to receive workers’ compensation benefits, according to the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation’s Enforcement Division.

    April 23, 2014

  • Standoff 1 mlh.jpg Police: Four-hour standoff ends with peaceful surrender

    A man who was armed with at least one firearm and believed to be under the influence of alcohol surrendered to police Tuesday night after barricading himself for four hours inside a carpet mill in downtown Dalton, officials said.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Murray deputy bit by drug dog while taking selfie

    A Murray County Sheriff’s Office deputy is recovering after one of the department’s drug dogs bit him in the face on Monday.

    April 23, 2014

  • Local wrestler ‘made everybody smile’

    Rash Renegade got his wrestling nickname after a motorcycle wreck several years ago left him with a bad case of road burn.

    April 23, 2014

  • Pinwheels in murray '14 1 mlh.jpg Awareness can prevent child abuse

    Three hundred forty-six pinwheels dotted the Murray County Courthouse lawn on Tuesday, representing 346 reported cases of child abuse in the county last year.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Murray library, regional system still far apart

    Murray County officials say they will announce soon if they will follow through with their plan to take the Chatsworth-Murray Library out of the Northwest Georgia Regional Library System.

    April 22, 2014

  • Fire believed to have started outside home

    Investigators are still working to learn what sparked a fire that nearly destroyed a house at 602 Top St. in Dalton on Monday.

    April 22, 2014