ANDERSON — Having a medical background, Republican Chuck Dietzen believes he can affect discussions on national health care if he’s elected to the U.S. House.

As one of 15 candidates seeking the Republican Party nomination in the 5th Congressional District, Chuck Dietzen, 58, believes his background distinguishes him from the pack.

“The important thing is my background and life experiences as a doctor,” Dietzen said during an interview Tuesday with The Herald Bulletin. “I know the district.”

Dietzen grew up in Kokomo and recently retired as chief of pediatric rehabilitation medicine at Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health.

He is a member of the Howard County Hall of Legends, and is the founder of and a volunteer for Timmy Global Health.

“I can affect what happens with health care,” Dietzen said. “Twenty percent of the gross domestic product is spent on health care. I have been to many countries with socialized health care.”

Dietzen said there is plenty of money in health care; the problem is how we’re spending it.

He said Americans need to learn more about wellness programs and how to prevent illness.

Medical students receive little or no education when it comes to end-of-life care, he said.

Although the Republican Party at the national level has focused on repealing the Affordable Care Act, Dietzen said a majority of Americans want Congress to build on the current system.

Like most of the candidates seeking the nomination, Dietzen said he agrees with a lot of the policies being promoted by President Donald Trump.

He particularly noted the economic growth and the low unemployment rate.

“I would have a different management style,” Dietzen said. “We need to have short-term goals with a long-term outcome.”

Dietzen said he is good at consensus building.

“My experience has been getting things done,” he said.

Concerning the race for the nomination, Dietzen said he believes his campaign is gaining momentum.

“People have been waiting to see how the race shapes up,” he said. He thinks the current general consensus sees Kelly Mitchell, Beth Henderson and him as most likely to win the nomination.

Dietzen said people will vote with money during the primary campaign.

“Who can raise the money to get their message out to the voters,” he said.

Follow Ken de la Bastide

on Twitter @KendelaBastide,

or call 765-640-4863.

Senior Reporter covering Anderson and Madison County government, politics and auto racing for The Herald Bulletin. Has been working as a journalist in central Indiana since 1977.

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