10 Healthcare Policy Questions for the GOP Candidates

The second Republican Presidential Candidate debate is tonight. Here are 10 healthcare-related questions the moderators ought to ask.

The second GOP presidential candidate debate is tonight. Most of the chatter seems to be revolving around anti-establishment politics, immigration, and the Iran deal. With the exception of the usual pablum that Obamacare should be repealed and replaced, there has been relatively little focus on healthcare policy, despite the fact that the field of candidates includes doctors. Here is a 10-question pool that CNN moderators should use:

1. Are you in favor of a single-payer system to replace what we have now? If not, what would you do to change or repeal Obamacare and what would you put in its place?

2. Electronic medical record deployment has been a disaster after billions of dollars of federal funding. Would you support a moratorium on its use and how would you proceed forward?

3. How would you attempt to close the health disparities among minorities, particularly Hispanics?

4. How would you address the burden of undergraduate and postgraduate student loans?

5. Would you change the Food and Drug Administration and commissioner to accelerate biomedical and health innovation?

6. How do you intend to deal with the looming Medicare and Medicaid shortfalls, which are the primary components of our national debt?

7. In Gallup's annual measure of 25 major US business sectors, the percentage of Americans with a positive view of the pharmaceutical industry dropped from 40% in 2014 to 35% this year, while the percentage with a negative view rose from 36% to 43%. This leaves the industry with a negative net-positive rating of -8 in 2015. How do you intend to lower the cost of Sick Care in the US, particularly skyrocketing drug prices?

8. Should we pass a national assisted suicide law?

9. Should there be a national medical or telemedicine license?

10. Would you support paying for care outside of the US for Medicare and Medicaid eligible patients if it were equal in outcomes and significantly less expensive?

Don't expect the doctor-candidates to show up in white coats. The men will all wear dark suits and a red or blue tie. Instead, remember they are running to live in a white house not wear a white coat.