With the enactment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), every American citizen is required to enroll in this program to get the medical benefits. The ACA has many provisions that call for the attention of the employers, health institutions, individuals, and the government. Each of these stakeholders has an important to play in ensuring that the ACA meets its mandate. One of the provisions of the ACA is the individual mandate (Paul, 2011). According to the Act, every person or every American is required to purchase health insurance. The government believes that everyone can afford some money to pay or enroll for the programs, and this makes it a mandatory provision. Similarly, under the individuals mandate, those people who fail to purchase the health insurance faces a tax penalty of up to 2.5% of their household income (Paul, 2011). Lastly, the program has been a success because it provides a better health provision to Americans. This is so because it covers preventive services without deductible pays, invests in primary care workforce, increases support for community health centers and prevents illness as well as promoting health.
The ACA is working to making health care more affordable, accessible and of high quality in America. Because of this, the ACA is providing better options to the Americans by making health care more affordable and available through health care insurance marketplace (HHS, 2016). The marketplace provides residents with the possibility of signing quality health coverage and a cost they can afford. Secondly, the ACA is successful because it has reduced the number of uninsured Americans. This is so because, since its inception, the uninsured 40 million people have signed gained insurance coverage (HHS, 2016). The reduced number is also because the act provides a new coverage option for young adults. Thirdly, it has led to success because it has expanded the Medicaid coverage to individuals with low income at below 133% of the federal poverty level (HHS, 2016).
The implementation of the provision in the state of Texas has success in different ways, and people can attest to the benefits they enjoy. First, the implementation of the programs has ensured a stronger Medicare programs (Norris, 2016). Since its inception, the residents have saved much money from the discount they get when purchasing some brands of medicine. Similarly, the programs have saved many residents a lot when it comes to the cost of prescription of drugs (Norris, 2016). In 2015, residents in Texas with Medicare in the donut hole received a 55% discount on covered brands of medicine and a subsequent 35% on generic drugs (Norris, 2016). According to many reports, residents have benefited from the ACA and averagely save $1,500 each year on medication (HHS, 2016). Moreover, the program has led to the cracking down of fraud and abuse cases. Other achievements of this act include ending discrimination for pre-existing conditions and expanding mental health and substance use disorders benefits (HHS, 2016). Because of all these benefits, it is seen that the ACA has made a tremendous contribution to helping the residents of Texas gain access to expanded medical care.
In my view, some parts of the Act should be repealed to make it more appealing and to minimize clash of the law with the existing ones. For instance, the provision on the individual mandate should scrap to make it comply with the individuals freedoms and rights. According to this provision, everyone is required, and it is mandatory that each one subscribes to the programs failure to which one is penalized. This means that individuals are forced by the federal government to buy or subscribe to the program of face penalty. According to the US Constitution, the Federal government does not have the right to force an individual to but a product he or she don’t need. Although the Supreme Court upheld the issue, it did not end there. This has made many people take advantage of the small penalty which they can pay without a hitch rather than subscribe to the program. It seems that the older person who feels sick often gets into the program with the young people opting out. This brings imbalance as the elderly subscribes while the young and energetic opts out, as they are not deterred by the penalty. Hence, there is a need to change the provision to make it more appealing to those not deterred by the fines or penalty.
Overall, ACA is a blessing to many US residents who were unable to get medical care in health institutions because of discrimination and inability to pay. With the introduction and subsequent implementation of ACA, many residents can now afford to get medical attention. Similarly, the number of uninsured residents has reduced. Texas has also benefited from this program because it has achieved its intended goals.
- HHS, 2016. 5 years later: how affordable care Act is working in Texas. Available from http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/facts-and-features/state-by-state/how-aca-is-working-for-texas/index.html [June 20, 2016]
- Norris, L. 2016. Texas health insurance exchange/marketplace. Available from https://www.healthinsurance.org/texas-state-health-insurance-exchange/ [June 20, 2016]
- Paul, S. 2011. Remedy and Reaction: The Peculiar American Struggle Over Health Care Reform, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT.