Washington pioneers public health care option, but controlling costs remains tricky

(CNN)Washington, DC, may be gridlocked over what to do about health care, but Washington state is blazing a trail for progressives looking to lower costs and expand coverage. In addition, the state’s efforts lay bare the challenges of getting the government more involved in health care. The Affordable Care Act bill originally contained a public option, but the contentious provision was ultimately struck before it became law amid opposition from the industry and some members of Congress. Some argued that a public option wasn’t needed to boost coverage, said Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, managing director at Manatt Health, who worked on the law’s passage and implementation for the Obama administration. “Ten years later, we may feel differently about what’s necessary,” she said. …