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It will only be one of 8,500 community forums the Obama Administration will hold on the nation’s health care system, but this was among the first, it was attended by incoming Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Daschle and it took place in a town of just 700 people. Some 35 people turned out in Dublin, Indiana, yesterday to talk about health care. A woman asked what her 13-year-old son would do for health insurance, given his congenital heart problem, according to a report in the Indianapolis Star. A family practice office manager told of the mountainous number of forms he had to fill out to be paid by insurance companies. The fire chief wondered who would pay for new equipment his volunteer outfit would need by 2010.
Daschle (above, at the meeting) asked questions and took notes. He said the stories he heard will help change the minds of some in Congress. The Washington Post sees the forums as part of an elaborate, grass-roots campaign similar to the effort that elected the Democrat. With other issues, it seems the Obama transition team has scant understanding of rural needs. Not so with health care, it appears.