Obamacare Pros and Cons and Mandated Insurance Essay

  • Length: 2 pages
  • Sources: 4
  • Subject: Health (general)
  • Type: Essay
  • Paper: #33748105

Excerpt from Essay :

In an ideal world, every single person would be able to afford the medical care and attention they need throughout their lifespan. The Affordable Care Act, colloquially called Obamacare, set as its goal eventual universal healthcare coverage. Unfortunately, Obamacare has not promoted the ultimate goal of providing affordable healthcare for all Americans. Mandating healthcare insurance does help reduce disparities in access to affordable and necessary interventions, tests, and treatments. As idealistic as Obamacare is, the policy has not reduced the costs of healthcare but it does represent a step in the right direction towards distinguishing between the profit motive in healthcare insurance and the ethical obligation to create a more caring and egalitarian society.

The Affordable Care Act used mandated insurance coverage as its main policy initiative for several reasons, both fiscal and humanitarian. As Gruber (2012) points out, about 12 million employed Americans were not receiving coverage from their employers and were instead purchasing insurance through the “nongroup market,” which guarantees “much higher” premiums and “much worse” coverage (p. 1). Obamacare also strengthened and improved Medicare and Medicaid, and vastly increased the number of all Americans who were able to access the healthcare system (“Is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) Good for America?” 2015). Obamacare offered a state-sponsored federal healthcare insurance plan in lieu of the inefficient and unethical nongroup market coverage, to help underinsured or uninsured Americans receive affordable coverage. Obamacare also ensured that insurers could not discriminate based on prexisting conditions, another strong reason why mandated insurance is preferable to a more market-driven system as the one in place prior to the ACA.

Opponents of the ACA have made several claims as to the fiscal feasibility of the act. For example, Avik Roy claimed that Obamacare led to insurance rate hikes and budget deficit increases (“Is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) Good for America?” 2015). Alonso-Zaldivar (2016) also claims that per person spending on healthcare has reached an all-time high at over $10,000. Moreover, when healthcare is more affordable, more people will use healthcare services either for prevention or treatment. The main problem with these opposing views is that they are misleading facts; there is no causality between the cost of insurance premiums and/or the amount of budget deficit and Obamacare specifically. The rising cost of healthcare has more to do with cost structuring, insurance price gouging, and profit-driven…

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