State Sen. Dale Zorn (R-Ida) at his Office Hours at the Clinton Coney Island

CITIZEN: So it is pretty apparent to me that health care needs to be fixed. In general it is just a whole hot mess. And I think a good place to start would be with the, I think they’re called the essential health benefits, there’s like 10 of them. A good example would be that I am a young, healthy woman who has no plans of having a child any time soon, but I would still be expected to pay for maternity care. Or that I’m also a young, healthy person with no history of diabetes in my entire family, and I am still expected to pay for coverage for diabetes. Like I’m paying for things I am not going to use, I’m not going to need, and I feel like if I were just able to choose what I would like to have coverage for, things that I might actually need, it would really help lower the cost overall. I guess I just wanted your thoughts on that.

ZORN: You’re absolutely right. Unfortunately that’s a federal law.

CITIZEN: Right, I mean, I just figured states start the change.

ZORN: I have talked to our Congressman about that and I know they had, it was happening in the works, I don’t know where it’s at or what the end result was. But they recognized that it was a problem, that you should be able to pick and choose what type of coverage you want. Most of that came because of the Obamacare and depending what they do with the remainder of that, in probably will have something to do with what you’re thinking. I am fully in support of that because there’s people like you say that can’t get pregnant anymore, but yet they have to pay for that coverage. And it’s silly that they have to do that.

Dale Zorn on Eliminating Protections for People with Pre-Existing Conditions at his Coffee Hours at Agua Dulce Coffee & Tea

CITIZEN: So, I wanted to talk today about, I am a little bit concerned about health care in my family, so my mom is a single mom, and she has to purchase health care and I —

ZORN: Federal health care?

CITIZEN: Yeah, through Obamacare. And I just, I want to ask you about like essential health benefits, because I’ve been looking into it more, and I don’t understand why she has to purchase essential health benefits, like in a plan, it covers maternity care — why is she paying for maternity care? She’s not having any more kids, like, you know, why is she paying for pediatric care when none of her kids are that are, and what can be done about that?

ZORN: I understand. I’m going to sound like I’m passing the buck, and that’s not how I want to sound. This is a federal issue. And I’ve heard this same thing, over and over, and I suggest that you give your Congressman or Senator, Senator federal, on the federal side, and talk to them about it. I can tell you that Congressman Walberg has, I’ve heard him speak about this issue in the past, and I think he knows a lot more about it than I do, because I’m a state Senator, not a federal Senator. So, I would really suggest you talk to him, to meet him or [inaudible].

CITIZEN: Okay, is there anything that can be done about that at the state level?

ZORN: Not on a state level, because it’s a federal law. We can’t, we can’t circumvent federal law. But it is a problem, and you’re absolutely right that, why should we pay for something that we’re not going to use? I’m with you 100%.