Erlanger to host 3rd District health forum July 9 in Chattanooga

Erlanger to host 3rd District health forum July 9 in Chattanooga

June 30th, 2012 by Chris Carroll in News

An aerial image of the Erlanger in Chattanooga/Hamilton County

Photo by Dan Henry/Times Free Press.

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Seating is limited but, medical society President Rae Bond said interested members of the public can call her office at 622-2872 to get a spot on a waiting list in case seats are available closer to the event.

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Six of seven candidates for Tennessee's 3rd Congressional District seat are expected to talk hospitals and health care 12 days after the Supreme Court upheld President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act.

A July 9 candidate forum is devoted exclusively to health issues, and the city's public hospital, Erlanger, will host.

Seating is limited for the two-hour event, which is expected to touch on the Supreme Court decision, Medicare reimbursement rates for physicians, insurance exchanges and other topics. The forum is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. at the Probasco Auditorium at Erlanger's downtown campus.

The event sponsor, the Chattanooga and Hamilton County Medical Society, is prioritizing 120 seats for physicians and local hospital leaders. But medical society President Rae Bond said interested members of the public can call her office to get a spot on a wait list in case seats are available closer to the event.

Confirmed participants are Republicans Ron Bhalla, U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, Scottie Mayfield and Weston Wamp, and Democrats Mary Headrick and Bill Taylor, according to a news release.

"Our intent is not to have the candidates engaging each other, but to have a moderated forum," Bond said.

Matthew Deniston is running as an independent, but his name wasn't on the list of participants.

"I couldn't get in contact with him," Bond said.

Deniston could not be reached Friday afternoon.

The event will mark the first time dairy executive Mayfield has agreed to participate in a 3rd District debate or forum in Hamilton County. A week after Mayfield was lampooned at a Chattanooga Tea Party debate for missing out, Bond said Mayfield was "delighted" to accept her invitation to the forum.

A Mayfield spokesman did not return a call requesting comment.