Week 4 The ACA & Public Health.

Week 4 The ACA & Public Health.

President Obama’s JAMA article was really interesting. One of the biggest things that surprised me was the amount the uninsured rate dropped, it also surprised me how large the uninsured rate was to begin with. According to the article, the uninsured rate was approximately 43%, it dropped to approximately 16% in 2010, and finally all the way down to approximately 9.1% in 2015. That’s a drop of almost 34%. That is very surprising to me. I knew the Affordable Care Act would have a large impact on the population, but I didn’t realize it was that big. I also never realized that before the Affordable Care Act 43% of our nation was uninsured. I never knew it was so common for people not to have health insurance.

This years election is very important. The candidates are obviously Donald Trump, and Hillary Clinton. They have very different plans for the direction of health care. Trump’s main plan is to repeal and replace the Affordable care act. This worries me a lot because of how much the Affordable Care Act has done for the American people. Plus his idea of just replacing it is very unlikely to happen. We’ve already seen how long it takes for something like this to pass. If we were to get rid of the one we have now who knows when the next one would come? On the other hand, Clinton’s plan involves keeping the Affordable Care Act. Her plan doesn’t worry me as much because she’s keeping what is already in place and she’s trying to expand it to make it better.

Two improvements that I believe need to be made to the health care system are, making health care plans affordable for everyone, and making health care plans accepted everywhere. We should make it possible for everyone to have health insurance, whether that means making lower costing plans, or providing help to make plans more affordable. And it shouldn’t matter what plan you have, as long as you have a plan you should be accepted everywhere.

8 thoughts on “Week 4 The ACA & Public Health.

  1. Similar to you, I was surprised to learn how much the ACA has helped in providing insurance to more people. The fact that the uninsured rate started at 43% and has since dropped to 9.1% in 2015 is shocking to me; I never realized that the ACA had this big of an impact on our nation.
    I agree that Trump’s plan to completely throw away the ACA and start over with something brand new is both scary and unlikely. As we learned the previous week, for 70 years there were numerous failed attempts to reform the health care system until finally in 2010 the ACA was enacted. Trump seems to be overly optimistic if he believes that he can completely change the health care system in a few years, for this process can take decades. I would not say that the ACA is perfect, but I believe that it would be better to work on improving it rather than getting rid of it completely.
    I also agree that health care insurance needs to be more affordable. Many people are unable to have health insurance due to the fact that it is so expensive. If we want to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to have health insurance, the costs must be reduced.

  2. Hey Justin,
    After reading your article, I realized you and I are on the same page. In terms of the Affordable Care Act, I never knew as well how powerful it is. In my opinion, it has done us so much good and much more of a benefit than a loss to this country. The amount of people who were uninsured before was not acceptable. People who live in the greatest country of the world, should have these acts, such as the ACA, presented to them. This year’s election is important because the ACA is important to the country and the only changes we need are positive ones. One thing I may not agree with is making the ACA affordable to everyone. I do believe that it is affordable; however, what I do suggest is that we make the plans that aren’t as covered, more covered so people can get more for a less price. Besides that, awesome post!

  3. The drastic drop if the uninsured rate thanks to the Affordable Care Act was surprising to me as well. I think the ACA is a step in the right direction but realizing just how great of a change it made for our country is eye-opening.

    Likewise, I too am worried about Trump’s plan to revoke the ACA. By repealing the ACA we would be going back in time and throwing away all the positive change we have made in regards to the health care system. Why take away something that has created a positive impact and taken years to come to light? Clinton’s plan for the health care system is the safest route if we would like to see our country continue to progress.

    Lastly, I agree with your idea on making health care plans affordable and acceptable. However, there is so much that goes into health care plans and while making them affordable for everyone and acceptable everywhere would be perfect, it would be very hard to make that happen.

  4. After reading President Obama’s JAMA article, I completely agree with you that one of the most surprising statistics was the drastic change in percentage of individuals without health insurance following the enactment of the Affordable Care Act. What made it even more disbelieving was the high number of uninsured individuals/families that did not have some sort of health care plan prior to the act, originally making up approximately 43% of the population. The impact of the ACA has had profound changes already to nearly 17.6 million people (who have gained medical insurance coverage as a result of the act), and has already decreased the uninsured rate to nearly 9% just last year.

    Like you’ve mentioned, the candidates this year for the Presidential elections have very different plans for the direction of health care. While Trump’s plan is to repeal and replace the ACA, Clinton plans on keeping the ACA and expanding it (which is a good idea considering how much of an impact the ACA has had on millions of Americans). The mere idea of replacing the ACA has brought a large sense of uneasiness among the population, as it would eliminate federal subsidies to about 7 million low/moderate income Americans who buy their own insurance, roll back Obamacare’s expansion of Medicaid for the poor, and take away coverage from young adults ages 18-26, etc. What exactly would happen then? Tens of billions of dollars in uncompensated care provided by our local Emergency Room hospitals could result. Additionally, simply replacing the ACA is not a simple task just to be talked about. We’ve already seen how long it took for the ACA to be passed, so if we were to get rid of the ACA, who knows when and how long the next one would be passed.

    Two improvements that can be made in regards to health care within the United States include its accessibility and cost. If having health care is required by law, it should definitely be more accessible to individuals/families. Furthermore, to help health care become more accessible to everyone, the cost should be reduced.

  5. It was interesting to see how drastic the uninsured rates dropped with the creation of the ACA. I realized how expensive health care is but thinking about how Americans have such a low poverty line I did not think so many people would be uninsured. Health care is something I have really taken for granted and didn’t appreciate what a privilege it is.
    As for the upcoming election, I feel that neither candidate will make a big difference in the outcome of the ACA and health care in the future. I think anything that does get removed or added will be minor and nothing major will happen due to Congress most likely being split on any decision either way. I think was Obama has done with the ACA is really here to stay for the time being.
    As for how to improve health care, I think the IDEA of free health care sounds great but the reality is, that in the U.S., it just isn’t going to happen, not in our lifetime at least. Modern Medicine is so new in the grand scheme of human history that it is revolutionizing and changing our world faster than we can keep up with. The new advances in medicine and procedures are developing faster than the rise of minimum wage or the ability to offer more free services. For example, if you think about everything that goes into one valve replacement for a heart, the medical professionals, the tools and machines, the education that each person has gone through, the different solutions and medicine administered to a patient, it all adds up to an immense amount of money. The U.S. will never get to the point where the government can pay for someones open heart procedure, it just isn’t reasonable. I think the best things we can do to improve healthcare is to invest in finding more non-invasive procedures that are safer and less expensive (i.e. TAVR) and starting to make more reasonable bills and acts towards healthcare.

  6. I agree that one of the most surprising things in Obama’s JAMA article is the drop in the percentage of people who are uninsured now that the ACA has been passed. The idea that so many more people have access to some kind of health care is absolutely amazing. Only about 9% of Americans are uninsured now. Though this is not perfect yet, the idea that almost every American can get help if they are sick is great.

    Both candidates have very different plans on how to handle the ACA. I personally believe that the plan that can help, or at least attempt to help, the greatest amount of Americans is the best plan. That is why I believe that repealing this act is not in the country’s, as a whole, best interest. Repealing it would make some Americans feel better financially, but the health of a nation is much more important that the wealth of one. With that mindset, I personally find Clinton’s plan of maintaining and expanding the ACA more appealing. Her plan simply helps more Americans.

    It is hard to make improvements to healthcare like this. To increase the coverage to every American, an increase in taxes would be necessary. To decrease costs, the coverage would have to decrease. I think the best thing we can do to bring cost down is to get control of the cost of drugs. It seems like the companies are using the fact that people will die without their drugs to bring the prices up. I believe the next step is to bring the prices of these drugs down.

  7. I, too, was surprised at the rate at which the uninsured rate fell after the ACA was passed. I agree that it would hypothetically be a bad idea to try to start from nothing after throwing out the ACA, but the idea of that actually happening just is not realistic. Hillary’s plans to expand upon the ACA concern me, though. I am concerned with the repercussions that could take place by expanding upon the ACA. The idea of “free” healthcare is simply just not realistic, as it follows the same principles as the economic concept of “no free lunch” (TANSTAAFL). No matter what, the resources to provide health insurance have to be paid for by somebody. I do agree that lowering the absurd pharmaceutical prices is a good move and that it would have a positive impact on the affordability of health care for all Americans.

    1. Hi Noah,

      I have never seen that acronym before, but thank you for writing it because it will now save me a lot of time when trying to explain this concept to people!

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