Since the country is now under a new administration, it will start working formally with the Congress to achieve the set domestic policy agenda. One of the most crucial domestic policy agendas relates to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Some are arguing that it should be repealed and replaced, while others are for the idea that it should be preserved and improved. An analysis of data shows that it would be more beneficial for the American citizens if the second argument is upheld.
There are many reasons why the Affordable Care Act should be preserved. This healthcare law has enabled thousands of children who come from working families to be able to receive affordable healthcare coverage. These factors were not present before the Affordable Care Act. Insurance only covered those who came from unemployed families, while those whose parents were employed could only access the costly healthcare (Nguyen, K, & Sommers 2016, p. 1410). Unfortunately, the fact that the parents were working did not mean that they could afford such expensive health care services, leading to a great struggle for many individuals.
The people who had pre-existing medical conditions were also covered. The pre-existing medical conditions prevented the individual from accessing affordable medical care, despite the fact that they needed it. Most of these individuals would at some point stop working as a result of the deteriorating health. Hence, many would suffer from not being able to afford healthcare services.
By preserving and improving the Affordable Care Act, the government will indeed save many individuals and organizations from paying more in uncompensated care costs as a result of the expected increase in the number of uninsured and underinsured patients (Kennedy & Wood 2016, p. 1807). Therefore, instead of repealing the act and causing a financial crisis for many healthcare users, it seems more reasonable to adopt a system where the ACA is improved to make it better.
The ACA prevented discrimination against the individuals who need healthcare coverage (Winkelman, HwaJung & Davis 2017, p. 809). For instance, insurance companies cannot cancel coverage when a patient started requiring a lot of funds for treatment. Also, they cannot cancel just because a new health condition is acquired, resulting in the need for more costs. It protects their rights by guaranteeing renewable coverage every time it is needed.
The ACA also protects the mental health care for individuals who relied on coverage (Buchmueller et al. 2016, p. 1418). Despite the introduction of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 (MHPAEA), there are still some insurers who could not extend coverage for mental health needs. However, the ACA ensured that mental health parity was extended also to cover all those who got covered. Therefore, if the ACA is repealed, this group of individuals will suffer as it is likely that most insurers will also back down.
This ACA also offers Medicaid expansion for people with disability. They can now comfortably go back to employment without worrying that they will lose their Medicaid and disability benefits. This is because, if in any case they go back to employment and lose their job and employer-sponsored plan, they can still rely on the Medicaid expansion for their health care needs (Parekh 2017, p. 640). Without this, it will be very devastating for these people living with a disability as the risk they face will be much higher.
In conclusion, the Affordable Care Act provides a lot of significant benefits to the people such that by removing it, the only protection they have will be lost. It will mean that most conditions will no longer be insured as the insurers will back down. The quality of life of the individuals will, therefore, become poor as many will be unable to afford the expensive health care services.
Kennedy, J, & Wood, E 2016, 'Medication Costs and Adherence of Treatment Before and After the Affordable Care Act: 1999-2015', American Journal Of Public Health, 106, 10, pp. 1804-1807, Professional Development Collection, EBSCOhost, viewed 28 October 2017.
Winkelman, T, HwaJung, C, & Davis, M 2017, 'The Affordable Care Act, Insurance Coverage, and Health Care Utilization of Previously Incarcerated Young Men: 2008-2015', American Journal Of Public Health, 107, 5, pp. 807-811, Professional Development Collection, EBSCOhost, viewed 28 October 2017.
Parekh, AK 2017, 'Public Health Communications: Lessons Learned From the Affordable Care Act', American Journal Of Public Health, 107, 5, pp. 639-641, Professional Development Collection, EBSCOhost, viewed 28 October 2017.
Nguyen, K, & Sommers, B 2016, 'Access and Quality of Care by Insurance Type for Low-Income Adults Before the Affordable Care Act', American Journal Of Public Health, 106, 8, pp. 1409-1415, Professional Development Collection, EBSCOhost, viewed 28 October 2017.
Buchmueller, T, Levinson, Z, Levy, H, & Wolfe, B 2016, 'Effect of the Affordable Care Act on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Insurance Coverage', American Journal Of Public Health, 106, 8, pp. 1416-1421, Professional Development Collection, EBSCOhost, viewed 28 October 2017.
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