Former Republican U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich spoke at the Intermountain Health Care Healthy Dialogues Series in Salt Lake City yesterday. Gingrich is the founder of The Center for Health Transformation, which is looking at new health reform models. He says the country needs to become healthier as a nation, not implement drastic health care reform it can't afford.
"There are a lot of ideas out there that are not radical left ideas, they are not single payer ideas, they are not big government ideas. If you only look at Democrats in congress it's inconceivable that they are going to produce something that is not far left, because people believe in a government run national health system. On the other hand, I don't think they can get that through the house, I just don't think it will pass."
Gingrich is currently working on a health care reform model that includes increasing preventative care and implementing health information technology, to make health care more evidence based. He says he's disappointed that Senators Barack Obama and John McCain haven't made health care reform more prevalent in their campaigns.
"I think for both candidates, it's a lost opportunity. I think here is a huge hunger in America to have people talk about prevention and wellness and early treatment. I think there is a tremendous interest in the country in talking about best practices. I mean one of the reasons we have developed, the Center for Health Transformation, our model of health based health reform, if that we didn't think either side had a model that would work. I don't think you can fix this system by just talking about financing."
Click on the audio player below to hear a podcast of Gingrich's comments.