2:43 PM EST
John A. Barrasso M.D., R-WY

Mr. BARRASSO. Standing on the Senate floor, looking at so many colleagues from States with a lot of rural areas, it is a challenge to have people who can provide these excellent services, who are very well trained, know how to do it, how they can provide the services in these small communities. We have dealt with that in Wheatland, WY, and New Castle, WY, where the expense for the malpractice insurance for those physicians was so high that even though they didn't deliver that many babies in these

small communities, they could not afford and the hospital could not afford to allow them to continue to deliver any babies. The amount of money they would receive from delivering babies was not enough to cover the insurance. In New Castle, WY, there were three physicians qualified to deliver, but the number of deliveries was such they ended

up with no one delivering because they wanted to take one night and the next and the next. So you have communities all across our country that are losing highly qualified medical practitioners--whether it is cardiologists, surgeons, trauma surgeons, whether it is obstetricians, gynecologist. We are seeing this all over our communities.

The Senator from Tennessee is here. There are a lot of small communities where they are going to lose those. We are seeing it in the cuts yesterday for home health. Those people are not going to be available to deliver small community care, lifeline, homebound, keeping them out of nursing homes, keeping them out of hospitals.

There are real consequences of this bill, not just with the junk lawsuits--that is a big part of it--but also with the Medicare cuts, also with the increased taxes we are seeing in this bill and how that is going to affect small businesses, which are the engines that drive the economy of this country--and profoundly.

We heard the Senator from South Dakota show the premiums families are going to have to pay for insurance are going to climb faster if this bill becomes law than if nothing were passed. Even though the President promised that families in this country on average would see a $2,500-per-year decline in premiums, the President's own numbers people say: Sorry, it is going to go up $2,100. That is a $4,600 shift for every family who tries to buy their own health insurance. That is what we are seeing

in Wyoming.

I ask my colleague from Tennessee if he is seeing the same things at home.