The Massachusetts legislature voted to override Romney's vetoes on Tuesday. So the employer assessment of $295 is back (albeit still insufficient). Other things reinstated include:
- Extension of dental and vision benefits to adult Medicaid beneficiaries and discounts on premiums and copayments for meeting wellness goals;
- A larger, revamped Public Health Council;
- A provision that would require a member of the Massachusetts House and Senate to participate in negotiations with the federal government regarding special Medicaid funding; and
provision that prohibits the Governor from making significant changes to mental health benefits without an explanation to the Legislature
These vetoed items actually say a fair amount about Romney. Namely, that he could care less about tooth decay (for an explanation of why it matters to have dental care, go here) and doesn't think public health initiatives matter in the age of bird flu. Too bad -- besides their disaster-combating aspects, public health initiatives need to play a large role in any reform overhaul, as the current incentives to be healthy are utterly failing.
Luckily Massachusetts has a democratic legislature which has its priorities in line.