Affordable Care Act

Abstract Analysis

Hall, Mark A., and Richard Lord. “Obamacare: what the Affordable Care Act means for patients and physicians.” Bmj, vol. 349, 2014, pp. 1-10.

This study claims that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was inspired by the need to enhance citizen’s access to affordable and quality care. Nonetheless, there are several challenges that manifested in healthcare institutions as a result of the integration of ACA. The market dynamics which define relations between doctors, patients, and healthcare institutions have been significantly affected by the policy. Consequently, this study sought to highlight the need for inquiries that set into motion the evolutionary changes in the healthcare institution as a result of the enactment of ACA. The study also examines the influences of the recommended strategies in improving the doctor-patient relationship. The formation of bigger affiliations by hospitals is aimed at protecting the institutions against the adverse implications of ACA in the regulation of the market.

According to Hall and Lord, there are several benefits to both consumers and healthcare institutions which were inspired by the enactment of ACA a. Notably, analysis of the history of healthcare in the US reveals that prior to the integration of the Obamacare policy, the US health system was averagely more per person in the provision of care than was the same for other developed countries. While the Medicaid program sought to mitigate some of the costs on citizens seeking care, it only addressed individuals who had been prescribed into specific categories. The expansion of Medicaid under Obamacare accounts for the increased insurance covers in the region. Analysis of the history of the policy also addresses the various steps that were instituted before the enactment of ACA. Essentially, the Republicans were pitted against Democrats in the enactment of the program. While the former argued for the embrace of subsidy method in addressing individuals who did not have access to insurance cover, the Democrats sought an expanded cover which would ensure all citizens are insured irrespective of their financial circumstances. Still, such a project sounded ambitious as the Federal government would have been compelled to spend more on promoting coverage. In adopting the ACA, the Senate had to accept a re-defined version of the policy as a medium through which compromise could be reached. The Act was signed into law in 2010.

Hall and Lord suggest that there were several features that underlined ACA. Some of the components that defined the policy include universal insurability. The study also highlighted the core insurance provisions which defined the scope of the framework. Mainly, the provisions addressed insurers, the insured, and healthcare institutions. By following the decrees defined in the policy, insurance cover was projected to increase. Still, the law was subject to significant lawsuits that questioned the Federal government’s ability to expand Medicaid and compel citizens to acquire coverage from private institutions. The assessment of the misconceptions surrounding the policy also provides a medium through which the study reinforces the criticality of the healthcare framework in promoting coverage – misconceptions on socialized insurance, socialized medicine, budget buster, and government-mandated insurance. Clarifications on the misconceptions enhance public perceptions of the policy.

Primarily, Hall and Lord make a valid argument regarding the impact of ACA on patients, consumers, physicians, and hospitals. I was majorly impressed by the inclusive approach that the study engaged in debating the concept. Analyzing the misconceptions, and clarifying on the same, presents an opportunity through which Hall and Lord are able to assess the implications of the policy can be projected. By alluding to future prospects, the authors sought to mirror the indispensability of the framework in future initiatives. I found the article to be informative and credible.

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Reisman, Miriam. “The Affordable Care Act, five years later: policies, progress, and politics.” Pharmacy and Therapeutics, vol. 40, No. 9, 2015, 575.

This study sought to highlight the important role that politics plays a crucial role in defining the scope and implications of policies. The influence of the Affordable Care Act is subject to different interpretations depending on one’s political alignment. Since the enactment of the policy, there are several changes have taken place in the healthcare setting. This study sought to examine the state of the Affordable Care Act in the wake of political debates, progressive connotations, and the development of complementary policies. Mainly, the analysis was predicated on the need to reflect the stability of the policy despite the various shifts witnessed in the healthcare industry.

Notably, the research is pegged on the idea that ACA is performing exemplarily in today’s community. To infer such a conclusion, the researcher relied on news headlines, the increased access to healthcare, and stakeholder opinion. The relevance of such a declaration cannot be overstated as healthcare policy effectiveness is a culmination of an improvement in service delivery and healthcare outcomes. An analysis of platforms such as RAND reveals the racial, ethnic, and economic progress that has been realized since the introduction of ACA. To discredit the misconceptions regarding the policy, the study examines some of the myths surrounding the policy and the truth related to the highlighted concern. The myths include the allusion to the loss of one’s health plan once the ACA came into effect. Contrarily, ACA has had an inconsequential role in changing the methods by which Americans secured their coverage plans.

Reisman argues that patients and consumers form the basis of the analysis; the study also examines the implications of ACA on pharmacies. As a primary stakeholder in the ACA discourse, pharmacies should be able to realize efficiency through the guidelines which advocate for the expansion of Medicaid programs that define the prescription of drugs to patients. A measure of assessment that is predominantly used in the analysis traces back to the ease of access that Americans have to care and health insurance. By augmenting access to healthcare, ACA mitigates the various impositions which lead to derailed health outcomes and efficiency.

Reisman’s analysis of the politics surrounding ACA reveals the sources of misconceptions around the policy. The rise in the number of stakeholders who are inclined toward ACA points to the efficiency of the policy in mitigating the previous concerns which were associated with the framework. While documenting her findings, the author reveals that ACA played a crucial role in the 2016 general election. The increase in court challenges reflects the divisive opinion that is present in the community regarding the framework. Still, Obamacare is likely to underline healthcare initiatives for a long time. Its effectiveness in enhancing access to care provides one of its major strengths and point of endearment to the public.

In my opinion, I feel that the study makes a valid claim regarding the efficiency of ACA in today’s healthcare industry. The allusions to various studies and analyses on the appropriateness of the policy point to efficiency. By reflecting on the political challenges, the author convincingly mirrors the multiple challenges that may hinder the effectiveness of the policy in the future. Unless there is a consensus among the major two political groups in the country, it is true that the ACA will be repealed in its entirety. Overall, Reisman succeeds in convincingly reflecting the progress of ACA within the past 5 years and the future prospects on the policy. In the analysis, the author mirrors various perspectives, which prevent biasness that may lead to partial declarations regarding the efficiency of the policy in mitigating healthcare concerns. I found her analysis to be comprehensive and insightful.

Calsyn, Maura. “Tackling Health Care Costs: The Role of the Affordable Care Act in 2014 and Beyond.” Members-only Library, vol. 17, No. 1-2, 2014, pp. 5-8.

The future of ACA continues to be a speculative issue. Caslyn claims that one of the major concerns around the policy relates to the healthcare costs that are still borne by consumers and patients in the health plans. Admittedly, most parts or clauses within the framework are subject to controversy. Nonetheless, there are concepts within the policy which are subject to overwhelming support. The cost-saving reforms within the policy are the center upon which the positive quality of the policy is predicated. This study sought to analyze the element of cost in addressing ACA and its influences on the future of the policy. In the research, ACA is shown to have been a culmination of the need to reduce the country’s expenditure on health and the expansion of care to all individuals. The reduced rate of growth of healthcare spending since the enactment of the policy is attributed to the functions of ACA. By outlining the ways by which the system is encouraging the mitigation of healthcare costs, the current analysis presents a positive projection of the implications of the policy. While the reduction in healthcare costs is important, it does not completely address the challenge posed to consumers and patients with health plans.

In the first section, Caslyn contends that there are various causes of healthcare costs. Primarily, the ACA alters the various incentives that encourage people to embrace healthcare plans and thus encouraging the embrace of health covers. For instance, payment in healthcare settings is altered when there are high rates of readmission. Subsequently, the hospitals are compelled to embrace quality in addressing patient concerns to avoid the costs that they bear in the provision of care. The encouragement of greater coordination among stakeholders in the healthcare industry is also likely to trigger a reduction in costs as a result of the sidelining of brokers. Alternatively, hospitals and healthcare facilities that undertake the bundled payment service initiative will be deserving of fixed payment for all services rendered to the patient in the period of treatment. From the intervention, the healthcare settings will be able to earn more revenue.

Caslyn suggests that the private sector can also play a crucial role in streamlining the effectiveness of ACA. By adopting the discrete Medicare reforms, the study suggests that private health care consumers will be able to reap more benefits and reduced costs on their plans. Equally, the alignment of the private payment policies will also play a crucial role in effecting positive change in healthcare institutions. I agree with the author’s allusion to the benefits of the policy on both healthcare providers and private consumers. The study makes a valid argument toward the embrace of the policy and the curtailment of disagreements surrounding the concept. Overall, Caslyn was inspired by the need to fully examine the role of ACA in the mitigation of healthcare costs in 2014. From the analysis, Caslyn builds a convincing argument on the indispensability of ACA as a cost-mitigating factor in health since its enactment. I found her analysis to be both effective and organized. She was projecting a deft ability to trace the origins of the policy. Reflect on the role played by various stakeholders and surmise the benefits of the policy on the patients and healthcare institutions.


Works Cited

Adepoju, Omolola E., Michael A. Preston, and Gilbert Gonzales. “Health Care Disparities in the Post–Affordable Care Act Era.” American Journal of Public Health, vol.105, no.S5, 2015, pp. S665-S667.

Angell, Marcia. “Obamacare Confronts a Fiscal Crisis: Why the Affordable Care Act Doesn’t Add Up.” New Labor Forum, vol. 22, no. 1, Sage CA: Los Angeles, CA: SAGE Publications, 2013.

Barcellos, Silvia Helena, et al. “Preparedness of Americans for the Affordable Care Act.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2014, pp. 201320488.

Barrilleaux, Charles, and Carlisle Rainey. “The Politics of Need: Examining Governors’ Decisions to Oppose the “Obamacare” Medicaid Expansion.” State Politics & Policy Quarterly, vol. 14, no. 4, 2014, pp. 437-460.

Calsyn, Maura. “Tackling Health Care Costs: The Role of the Affordable Care Act in 2014 and Beyond.” Members-only Library, vol. 17, No. 1-2, 2014, pp. 5-8.

Finkel, Ed. “Coping with Obamacare: Firm Size Is a Key Factor in What Needs to Be Done.” ABA Journal, vol. 100, no. 2, 2014, pp. 25-26.

Goffinet, Diane M., et al. “Medical-Legal Partnerships in the Age of the Affordable Care Act.” Clearinghouse Rev., vol. 47, 2013, p.265.

Hall, Mark A., and Richard Lord. “Obamacare: What the Affordable Care Act Means for Patients and Physicians.” Bmj, vol. 349, 2014, pp. 1-10.

Rak, Sofija, and F. A. A. F. P. Janis Coffin DO. “Affordable Care Act.” The Journal of Medical Practice Management: MPM, vol. 28, no. 5, 2013, pp. 317-319.

Reisman, Miriam. “The Affordable Care Act, Five Years Later: Policies, Progress, and Politics.” Pharmacy and Therapeutics, vol. 40, no. 9, 2015, p.575.