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Why Rick Perry Gives Me Hope On Health Care

As I watched Texas Governor Rick Perry announce his presidential candidacy this weekend, he gave me a sense of hope and his speech really resonated with me.

His words reminded me of the respect that we as Americans deserve, and the importance of a government that works for us and with us – rather than the downward spiral that the current political and economic climate has continued to indulge.

In his speech on Saturday, Perry pledged to free Americans from "the grips of central planners who would control our health care, who would spend our treasure, who downgrade our future and micromanage our lives." And I’d like to think that he would keep his word.

He has successfully led Texas for more than 10 years through one of the hardest economic downturns in American history.

Now, being a practicing physician, naturally, health care reform is high on my radar. Over the past few years, I have commented extensively on the topic and the overall challenges that the practice of medicine is facing these days. So I decided to take a closer look at the state of medicine in Texas.

I was surprised to find that Texas is considered by many doctors, nurses and health care professionals in general, to be among the best states in the country to practice medicine. 

Several surveys have found that there are many benefits to practicing medicine in the state of Texas including a variety of top-quality medical centers, affordable housing for medical professionals and their families, no state income tax, and finally, a well-balanced liability reform which protects both patients and doctors, without the looming threat of frivolous law suits.

I have to say, that my first impression of Gov. Perry, as the successful leader of the second largest state in the union has piqued my interest in seeing what he would be capable of achieving for our country.

I’ve been practicing medicine for more than 30 years, and I love what I do.That's why it's so important to me that we protect the institution of American medicine that was built on the same principles woven into the very fabric of this great country.

So this is my personal opinion, as a father of three and a proud American, but also, as a doctor who wants to continue to improve the quality of medical care without worrying about the bureaucrats looking over my shoulder in the future.

Dr. Manny Alvarez is the Senior Managing Health Editor of FoxNews.com and Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Science at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey.

Dr. Manny Alvarez serves as Fox News Channel's Senior Managing Editor for Health News. Prior to this position, Alvarez was a FNC medical contributor.
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