Lt. Gov. Dr. Dan Mongiardo answered questions after his dinner speech. Kywordsmith Caleb Smith is in blue shirt. I'm in the pink jacket wagging my purse ala Queen Elizabeth
Lieutenant Governor Mongiardo expanded on his keynote speech on health care after the McCracken County Alben Barkley Democratic dinner.
Q. What about a single payer health plan? Do you support it?
Mongiardo: "My expertise is in fixing the system of health care. I don’t think we will be going to single payer system. I believe in universal care where everybody has some form of health insurance coverage, but that doesn’t mean a single payer system. The bottom line is what we are paying for is way too expensive. Whether it’s one person paying for it or a multiple tier system, we have to lower the cost and improve the quality."
Q. What about delivery? There’s some talk of letting nurse practitioners being allowed to do more than they are able to do. Have you looked into that at all?
Mongiardo: "Number one – we want to make sure that the patient is safe. And we want to make sure whoever is delivering that care is well trained. Nurse practitioners certainly have a role in delivery of health care. So do physician assistants. So do RNs. So do physicians.
I don’t think we have enough primary care providers in our system. We need more primary care physicians to help manage the patient and the information about that patient."
Q. How would you address the issue of not enough primary care physicians?
Mongiardo: "There are multiple ways. We need to change the reimbursement model. We need to create what is called “medical homes” where the patient is connected to a primary care physician and that primary care physician is taking care of that patient’s information. If the patient has diabetes, for instance, they will be connected to that physician wirelessly so their sugar is monitored all the time."
Q. Western Baptist has a new wireless diagnostic program. Are you familiar with that?
Mongiardo: "As a matter of fact, I just visited the pharmacy out there. The new e-pharmacy has created 25 new jobs. That’s the kind of jobs I’m talking about. We are already seeing e-health bring jobs to Kentucky. The e-pharmacy here in Paducah could become one of the number one pharmacy in the nation."
Q. You didn’t mention it in your remarks, so I wanted to tell you not to give up on adventure tourism.
Mongiardo: “Adventure tourism is critical to our economy - especially in rural Kentucky. Look at the assets we have – the lakes and the outdoors. We have everything you can imagine doing outdoors, except salt water. Kentucky – no sharks.”