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Affordable Care Act

Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act is a comprehensive healthcare reform enacted in March of 2010. A measure of income that is deployed annually by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is referred to as the federal poverty level or (FPL). ACA states that if an individual’s income is above 400% FPL, one may still qualify for a premium tax credit. Conversely, if someone’s income is at or below 150% FPL, one may qualify to enroll or change to Marketplace coverage during the allotted enrollment period (Healthcare.gov, 2010). A second goal that ACA had was to expand the Medicaid program to cover adults with income below 138% FPL. Lastly, the Affordable Care Act was designed to lower health care costs in general (Health and Human Services, 2022).

Cost Benefit analysis in terms of legislators being reelected affected efforts to repeal/replace the ACA and Voter’s Views Affecting Decisions

Repealing ACA regarding expanding Medicaid to low-income adults or those below 150% FPL would reverse perceived gains in financial security. The first two years that the Affordable Care Act was enacted yielded a decrease in collections for unpaid medical bills by a staggering $3.4 billion. Subsequently, there were 50,000 fewer medical bankruptcies. The expansion of coverage for lower-income individuals caused medical debt to fall by an average of over $1000.00 per person. If ACA were repealed, 40 million people’s health insurance coverage would be at risk. In 2023, over 22 million people will be enrolled in Medicaid expansion secondary to coverage available through ACA. The ACA is said to be preventing thousands of preventable deaths each year by rendering medications to treat chronic conditions and preventable interventions such as screenings (The United States Government, Fact sheet, 2023).

The Affordable Care Act’s cost benefits are analyzed and favored or unfavored based on partisanship. 87% of Democrats and 55% of Independents view the law as favorable, while 67% of Republicans view the law as unfavorable (Kirzinger, 2022). Unfortunately, the views of ACA are influenced by political parties, most like all significant agendas. Based on data and the fact that more than 40 million individuals’ coverage would be at risk, it seems logical that repealing ACA would harm public health. Another disposition is that although more money is being spent on preventable care, there is an actual mitigation in financial spending by deploying interventions to prevent worsening or early disease detection; as far as an analysis of how it will affect legislators, the numbers of point to ACA remaining intact if you are running for Democratic or Independent office and repeal ACA if you are running for Republican office. I am not sure if things are perpetuated by the many platforms that Americans can extrapolate information, but based on sheer observation agendas are pushed out with tremendous force amongst the public. I evaluate many views of all political parties. Still, I am very conflicted due to all sides having many agendas that I favor and, conversely, some views I am truly against.

Regarding ACA, the law renders care to a broader population predicated on their income. Before educating myself, I voted based on my political stance, which led to my opinion that if Americans voted based on the greater good, we would be better off. The raw truth is that politicians will disseminate opinions based on being re-elected, which equates to agreeing or disagreeing based on the voters’ views.

References

Affordable care act (ACA) – glossary. Glossary | HealthCare.gov. (n.d.). https://www.healthcare.gov/glossary/affordable-care-act/

Ashley Kirzinger, I. V. (2024, February 22). 5 charts about public opinion on the Affordable Care Act. KFF. https://www.kff.org/affordable-care-act/poll-finding/5-charts-about-public-opinion-on-the-affordable-care-act/#:~:text=Views%20of%20the%20ACA%20are,67%25)%20hold%20unfavorable%20views.

Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs (ASPA). (2022b, March 15). About the ACA. HHS.gov. https://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/about-the-aca/index.html Links to an external site.

The United States Government. (2023a, February 28). Fact sheet: The congressional republican agenda: Repealing the affordable care act and slashing Medicaid. The White House. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2023/02/28/fact-sheet-the-congressional-republican-agenda-repealing-the-affordable-care-act-and-slashing-medicaid/#:~:text=Repealing%20the%20ACA%2C%20in%20particular,were%2050%2C000%20fewer%20medical%20bankruptcies.

 

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