The second in a series of Regional White House Forums on Health Reform took place today in Burlington, Vermont. The forum was hosted by the University of Vermont and was moderated by Governor Jim Douglas of Vermont and Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts. Nancy-Ann DeParle, Director of the White House Office of Health Reform, represented the Obama administration. Forum participants included doctors, patients, providers, insurers, policy experts and health care advocates of all kinds both Democrats and Republicans who discussed the urgent need to provide high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans, and to curb skyrocketing health care costs that are draining our federal and state budgets, devastating families and small businesses, and undermining our long-term economic prosperity. Today s forum was a tremendous success, said Governor Douglas. The discussion was very helpful and with so many viewpoints represented, I know the White House will come away from this with many good ideas for how we build a more affordable and effective healthcare system in America. In keeping with the Obama administration s commitment to an open, inclusive, and transparent process for health reform, the forum brought together a diverse group of people to voice their concerns and ideas on reforming our health care system. Health care reform in Massachusetts has become a national model with more than 97% of residents insured in just two years, said Governor Patrick. But affordability is still a big challenge and we need payment reform and better cost containment across America to make healthcare truly available for all. Vermont, like Massachusetts, is a model for the rest of the nation, Governor Douglas continued. Our Blueprint for Health, Green Mountain Healthcare products and our Chronic Care Initiative are all programs that will help us bring down the cost of healthcare and lead healthier lives. We really appreciate the opportunity to share these programs with the rest of the country.And Nancy-Ann DeParle represented the Obama Administration. Today we continued our important national conversation on health reform, DeParle said. Exploding costs are bankrupting families and burdening businesses, dragging down state and local budgets, and piling up our national debt. The time to act is now.Regional White House Forums on Health Reform will also be held in Iowa, North Carolina, and California throughout the rest of March and early April. Anyone interested in participating in the discussion can visit www.HealthReform.gov(link is external) to submit their questions.
Press Association The 33-year-old was Arsene Wenger’s only signing during a quiet transfer window at the Emirates Stadium as the Arsenal boss looked to find a goalkeeper he could fully trust. Cech, who won 13 major honours during an 11-year stint at Chelsea, moved across London and has played every competitive game since. David Seaman believes the signing of Petr Cech could give Arsenal the consistency they need to mount a sustained title challenge. He may sit out Wednesday night’s third round Capital One Cup clash against fierce local rivals Tottenham, but he has been backed by former Gunners number one Seaman as a man who can turn the club into bona fide championship contenders. “It is a problem solved for Arsene,” Seaman told Press Association Sport. “You have got a goalkeeper there with great quality, great experience and who commands immediate respect from the Arsenal players for what he has done in the game. “(David) Ospina has done well and is a little unfortunate to find himself as number two – Wojciech Szczesny has shown inconsistency and you can’t do that as Arsenal goalkeeper. “With Cech you have just got quality. The consistency helps sustain a challenge, it helps the confidence of the defence – they know you’re not going to be making mistakes and being rash in games. “That is what you get with Petr Cech, he won’t make many mistakes and he is already showing how good he is despite having a new back four in front of him.” Despite the addition of Cech, many Arsenal supporters were upset that the club did not bolster their outfield options – the only club in the top five European leagues not to do so. But Seaman trusts Wenger and thinks he may dip into the transfer market when the window reopens in the new year, using some of the cash reserve of £193.1m revealed last week by financial figures for Arsenal’s parent company. “I’m sure in the January window there will be movement, especially now the figures for how much Arsene has to spend have come out,” he added. “If they get to January in a strong positon, I’m sure he will strengthen again. “It is brave that he has not listened to everyone and gone and spent money but he is in the same mould as Sir Alex Ferguson – so many people think they know more than Wenger but I’m sorry, they don’t. He knows the club better than anyone and knows what they need.” As well as the likelihood being Cech will be rested at White Hart Lane, midfielder Santi Cazorla will serve a suspension for the red card he picked up in Saturday’s controversial 2-0 defeat at Cech’s former side Chelsea. There is also the prospect that Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino will rotate his squad, meaning Michel Vorm could start ahead of first-choice stopper Hugo Lloris. France international Lloris was linked with a move away from Spurs in the summer but Seaman is a big fan of Tottenham’s new skipper. “He is really good. He is top, top quality,” he said. “He makes saves that you don’t expect him to make. I know he is not a big goalkeeper but he makes the saves, you see the gaps but he gets there. “He is a top quality goalie. It was all set to move around if David De Gea looked set to leave Man United. I’m sure a goalkeeper of that quality will be wanting to contend for trophies.” :: David Seaman was speaking on behalf of The Football League and Capital One – the credit card in your corner. Visit facebook.com/CapitalOneUK