affordable care act

President Trump has been repeatedly pressing on scrapping the Affordable Care Act but plenty of people and officials pledge their support to it. Here, we are going to inform you about what exactly the Affordable Care Act has done for people and whether or not has it been effective in treating the healthcare issues in the country. 

By the end of this read, we hope you will have enough facts to make an informed decision. 

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law about ten years back, i.e., in the year 2010. Since then, the law has changed the American healthcare system by extending healthcare coverage to nearly 20 million Americans and saving numerous lives. The ACA was also developed to secure consumers from insurance company strategies that might increase patient costs or limit care. 

Millions of Americans have profited by obtaining insurance coverage through the affordable care act. Many of these individuals had low-paying jobs or were unemployed. Some were unable to work because of disability or family responsibilities. Others couldn’t get good health insurance because of an ongoing health condition, such as a chronic disease. 

The law transcends the coverage, demanding employers to employ breastfeeding mothers with breaks at work, enabling calorie counts more accessible in restaurants, and establishing the Prevention and Public Health Fund, which facilitates the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state agencies identify and react to public health risks such as COVID-19.

Conservatives opposed the tax expansions and greater insurance premiums required to pay for affordable health care. Certain people in the healthcare industry are derogatory of the increased workload and expenses placed on healthcare providers. They also believe that it could have adverse impacts on the quality of care.


affordable care act

What happens if the affordable care act is repealed?

  • About 20 million Americans would lose coverage, thus increasing the nonelderly uninsured rate by over 7%.
  • States could lose $135 billion in federal funding for the marketplaces, Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
  • About 135 million Americans with preexisting health conditions might suffer discrimination if they are ever required to approach the individual market for health coverage.
  • Insurance companies will no longer be required to issue rebates when they overcharge Americans. In 2019, insurance companies reimbursed $1.37 billion in medical loss ratio rebates to policyholders.
  • The tax revenue that funds the expanded health coverage under the affordable care act would become tax cuts for millionaires, who would receive an average of $46,000 each.



What Are The Pros & Cons Of The Affordable Care Act?

Pros:

  • Subsidies for financial aid: Subsidies make buying health insurance less expensive for those who qualify. Also, the 80/20 rule's enactment implies 80% of your premium dollars are spent on healthcare rather than administrative costs.

  • Free preventive care: All eligible health insurance plans must offer ten significant health benefits. These benefits are inclusive of free preventive care and wellness visits with no user fee, coinsurance, or deductible.

  • No surprise cancellations or preexisting denials: Insurance companies cannot invalidate your policy because of an error on an application. They also can't reject coverage for a preexisting condition (as long as your plan is vested benefits).

  • No more unreasonable limits: Limits on lifelong benefits have been entirely banned, and annual limits are gradually eradicated. (This doesn’t include vested plans).

  • Medicaid is more inclusive for many: For states that have decided to grow their program, Medicaid coverage now incorporates uninsured Americans below 138% of the federal poverty level.

  • Dependants can remain under parents’ scheme for longer: Children could be insured under your health plan until they're 26 years old.

Cons:

  • The cost hasn’t reduced for all: Those who aren't eligible for subsidies may discover marketplace health insurance plans are expensive. Customers can end up paying more for a plan that covers benefits, including maternity care, that they may not require.

  • Tax penalties: Before 2019, you could encounter large tax penalties if you were not insured. The national penalty not anymore exists, but some states are now adopting health insurance jurisdictions of their own.

  • Shopping for coverage can be complicated: Buying for coverage can be more difficult with more coverage alternatives, limited enrollment periods, and issues with the websites.

  • Loss of company-sponsored health schemes: Some companies may find it more profitable to pay the penalty and allow their employees to purchase their own individual insurance on the exchanges instead of providing employer-funded coverage.

  • Shrinking networks: Several insurance companies made their provider networks smaller to reduce costs while implementing affordable care act requirements. This left customers with a lesser number of providers that are “in the network.”

  • Marketplace uncertainty may elevate costs: While the marketplace seems to be stabilizing, several counties still have only one insurance alternative because of decreasing competition, insurance cancellations, and rising costs.

 

ACA Facts & Figures

The ACA or Obamacare is popular yet often misunderstood by people. No matter whether you buy this scheme or not, the act has already impacted you in numerous ways. The following are the essential facts that you can consider and reap maximum benefits from this complicated and comprehensive legislation piece.

 

It is altering the way healthcare is delivered to people: 

The ACA made it compulsory that hospitals, doctors, and pharmacists work together in an exceptional way. Firstly, all medical records must be stored digitally rather than on paper. Digitized records allow doctors to share their diagnoses and treatments more easily. 

Secondly, Medicare pays hospitals depending on how well you have a record and not on the basis of how many tests and procedures your doctors prescribe. As a result, there would be a substantial decline in your total health care expense. 

Finally, healthcare providers are establishing Accountable Care Organizations, which manage your care between your doctor and your specialists. You may think that this was already happening at hospitals, but unfortunately, it wasn't. In fact, poor communication between doctors was the greatest cause of unexpected deaths among patients in 2010. The ACA fixes this issue by introducing an integrated system in which there is no miscommunication between the team of doctors.


Also Read: America Protests Amid COVID 19- How To Ensure Safety?

It has already enhanced healthcare and your insurance plans:

These enhancements include the following:

  • Plans can’t exclude those with preexisting conditions.
  • Insurance companies can’t anymore reject those who get sick.
  • Children under the age of 26 years can be accommodated in their parents’ plans. 
  • Annual limits are eliminated.
  • Lifetime limits are eliminated.

 

It benefits middle-class people more than the poor:

The ACA subsidies for those who register on the health insurance exchanges will cost the federal government $1.039 trillion during 2015 - 2024. It expends 30 % less or $792 billion on extended Medicaid and on the Children’s Health Insurance Program. The ACA subsidies run to families that make nearly between $47,000 and $94,000 per year or 400% of the federal poverty level. The average family income in the U.S. for a family of four was $79,698, an estimate that’s right into the middle. 

 

60% of people who are eligible for ADA subsidies are not even aware of it:

Seventeen million people are eligible for subsidies as they didn't have any insurance from their employers. However, they made a great deal of money for Medicaid; they are legal citizens of the U.S. But only 6.6 million did register. Grow your comprehension of how you can get benefited from ACA.

 

It amplifies the benefits of Medicare: 

If you've Medicare, the "doughnut hole" gap in coverage is being subsidized. There are numerous other ways that ACA impacts people differently based on their circumstances.

 

It doesn’t offer health insurance to illegal immigrants: 

Immigrants in the U.S. illegally cannot obtain affordable care. But the ACA does extend community health clinics to serve their needs. Why? So that they could access preventive care for chronic illnesses. As a consequence, they will use pricey emergency rooms less, thus reducing health care costs for everyone.

 

You must get health insurance for at least nine months every year or be subject to a tax:

Although millions of people get exemptions, for instance, if you reported bankruptcy, you are exempted. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act canceled the tax-effective 2019.



Sources:

https://www.americanprogress.org/

https://www.healthline.com/

https://www.healthmarkets.com/

https://www.thebalance.com/





Tags: Affordable care act pros and cons, Impact of affordable care act on health care organizations, Problems with the affordable care act