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COOK AIRS HEALTH VIEWS

Independent Party gubernatorial candidate Merrill Cook met with other candidates at the West Valley Chamber of Commerce and said the lack of medical care access and too many lobbyists are Utah's biggest health problem.

Cook said, though, America's health care is the world's best if we can afford it."Utah is among America's leaders in health care quality, the costs of the care have exploded and have left even fewer people with access to it," he said. "The solutions must maintain the quality we now have, make universal access to health care a reality and contain the cost."

Cook's solutions include a Utah State Health Insurance Fund, which would start as a voluntary employer-based system that builds on the strengths of the current system.

"Utah's workers' compensation fund has been so successful and helpful to business that it points the way for a successful state health insurance fund," Cook said.