Understanding Public Health
Understanding the Public Health and the Law On September 23, 2010 new reforms under the Affordable Care Act begin to bring to an end some of the worst abuses of the insurance industry. “These reforms will give Americans new rights and benefits, including helping more children get health coverage, ending lifetime and most annual limits on care, and giving patients access to recommended preventive services without cost-sharing (Turnock, 2010). ” These reforms will apply to all new health plans, and too many existing health plans as they are renewed.
Many other new benefits of the law have already taken effect, including rebate checks for seniors in the Medicare donut hole and tax credits for small businesses. And more rights, protections and benefits for Americans are on the way now through 2014. In March 2010, Congress passed and the President signed into law the Affordable Care Act, which puts in place comprehensive health insurance reforms that will hold insurance companies more accountable, lower health care costs, guarantee more health care choices, and enhance the quality of health care for all Americans.
Whether you get health benefits through work, buy insurance yourself, have a small business and desire to provide health coverage to your employees, are on Medicare, or don’t currently have insurance, the Affordable Care Act gives you better control of your own decisions about your health coverage. It makes insurance more affordable right away by providing small businesses with a tax credit to provide coverage, and in 2014, by providing tax credits to those who need help in buying insurance representing the largest middle class tax cut for health care in history.
The Affordable Care Act is projected to reduce premium costs for millions of families and small business owners who are priced out of coverage today. This could help as many as 32 million Americans who have no health care today receive coverage. Once the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented, Americans will have access to affordable health coverage. To help lower costs, the Affordable Care Act: Sets up a new competitive private health insurance market through state Exchanges, giving millions of Americans and small businesses access to affordable coverage, and the same choices of insurance those members of Congress will have.
• Holds insurance companies accountable by keeping premiums down and preventing many types of insurance industry abuses and denials of care, and ending discrimination against Americans with pre-existing conditions. Puts our budget and economy on a more stable path, since it is expected to reduce the deficit by more than $100 billion over the next ten years – and by more than $1 trillion over the second decade – by cutting government overspending and reining in waste, fraud and abuse. Starting this year and continuing through 2014, the Affordable Care Act will be implemented, increasing access to affordable health care for individuals, families, seniors, and businesses. Many important benefits begin as early as this year, including bans on the worst insurance company abuses; cost savings for seniors, families and small and large businesses; and coverage options for many Americans who have been locked out of the insurance market because of a preexisting condition (Turnock, 2010). ” Some conservatives have argued that the exchange should be open to any insurance company that wants to participate. “Let the free market set prices and benefit levels, they counter. Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Illinois, made the same point at the state task force’s first public meeting last month (Brust, 2010).
That approach, however, takes away the state’s direct ability to set common standards and encourage delivery reforms; insurance companies may be willing to change how they do business quite dramatically if the state can promise them access to hundreds of thousands of potential new clients. But, according to an interview with Duffett by the AP, is consistently on the side of insurance companies. The Republican, in other words, might push for a neutered exchange. The GOP nominee seems a bit confused about the other major component of health care reform impacting state government the expansion of Medicaid. In an interview with the News-Tribune this past spring, it was claimed that the Democratic health care reform package will add up to $6 billion, in additional costs for the state. That’s just seems bananas to me. The federal government is picking up the bulk of the costs through the first decade, when Brady would be in office.
Indeed, if roughly 900,000 Illinois residents enrolled in Medicaid by 2019, 700,000 of whom were previously uninsured, the state would have to spend an additional $2. 5 illion over five years (Burst, 2010). ” That’s nothing to sneeze at. But it will allow the state to insure almost 70 percent of working poor adults who lack health care coverage for just about $40 per person annually. That’s an amazing deal and the Republican offers no plausible alternative to promote a similar level of coverage. Reference Brust, Pamela (2010). Health and Wellness on the Healthcare Reform. Parkersburg News and Sentinel. Turnock, Bernard J. (2010). Essentials of public health. Jones and Bartlett Publishers.