Oregon Healthcare Amendment (2010)

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The Oregon Healthcare Amendment, also known as Initiative 78, did not appear on the November 2, 2010 statewide ballot in Oregon as an initiated constitutional amendment. The proposal called for an amendment that would protect the individual’s right to make health care decisions in the state of Oregon.

The measure was proposed by Americans for Prosperity in Oregon. "We believe it's important that Oregonians continue to have the ability and the right to choose their own doctor and purchase health care services that they believe and their doctor believes are necessary using their own money," said the organization.[1]

As of July 2, the state's petition drive deadline, no signatures were submitted in an effort to qualify the measure for the ballot.

Ballot title

The certified ballot title for Initiative 78 was:[2]

Amends Constitution: Limits regulation of "healthcare services" (defined); bars laws restraining, imposing special taxes on "healthcare services."

Result of "Yes" Vote: "Yes" vote amends constitution; limits government regulation of "healthcare services" (defined); bars laws restraining, imposing special taxes, or frustrating "healthcare services" purchased with private funds.

Result of "No" Vote: "No" vote retains current law; individuals may purchase medical services, insurance with private funds, subject to government's regulation, taxation, fees and excises for such services.

Summary: Amends constitution. Currently, individuals may purchase healthcare services with private funds and state may regulate, including tax, healthcare services. Measure bars using public resources or enacting laws to restrain, prevent, "frustrate" (defined), penalize or impose special taxation on individuals and businesses voluntarily entering into private "healthcare services" (defined) transactions. "Frustrate" includes implementing policies restricting pursuit of private healthcare options. Measure bars imposing taxes, fees, or excises specifically on "healthcare services" transactions, or their participants. Measure may invalidate existing regulation or taxation of "healthcare services" (defined). "Healthcare services" includes production, sale, distribution of medical services; and agreements providing access, insurance, or cost limits for medicines, medical services or healthcare providers. Measure may affect state's ability to fund programs providing healthcare services to some Oregonians. Other provisions.

Path to the ballot

See also: Oregon signature requirements

Petitions for an initiated constitutional amendment required eight percent of 1,379,475, or 110,358 signatures. The deadline for filing signatures for the November 2, 2010 ballot was July 2, 2010. As of July 2 no signatures were submitted in an effort to qualify the measure for the ballot.

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