The debate will continue for quite a period-of-time whether the Affordable Care Act achieved its objectives and was cost effective. While political parties and individuals posture the pro’s and con’s of the Affordable Care Act, there are some positive aspects.
Whether you loved or liked the previous healthcare insurance business model, the Affordable Care Act addressed three notable deficiencies. The following are those deficiencies and how the Affordable Care Act addressed them:
First – people with pre-existing medical conditions could not purchase insurance or it was cost prohibitive.
People with pre-existing medical conditions were not able to purchase insurance or the price was cost prohibitive. A number of individuals have pre-existing clinical conditions through no fault of their own. It could be a matter of genetics or other factors beyond their control. It is unreasonable to penalize individuals under these circumstances and put them at a financial disadvantage.
Second – young adults were not able to continue with medical insurance coverage under their parent’s policy.
Young adults need healthcare insurance just as much as adults or senior citizens. They may be generally healthier and need less care, but when involved in a serious medical situation the financial costs could be economically destructive. Young adults are just starting their careers or still in school studying, and cannot afford health insurance premiums. Once these individuals start their career, they are becoming productive citizens and able to financially support themselves. As a society, we want to provide a system that young people can achieve success through hard work without crippling them with medical debt because they could not afford insurance.
Third – lifetime medical coverage limitation.
Lifetime medical coverage limitations of the past created a great deal of stress and financial hardship on families that were dealing with a serious medical issue. Treatment of a patient for cancer, organ transplant, premature birth or other significant medical condition generates significant medical bills. In most situations when a serious clinical condition is treated, it would not take long for families to meet the lifetime medical coverage limitation. Any costs incurred beyond the limit, would become the responsibility of the family battling with a serious medical situation.
The Affordable Care Act rectified these three shortcomings by:
The question to be asked and eventually answered is, does the cost of the Affordable Care Act and its associated economic implications justify the benefits. Or could have these deficiencies of the previous healthcare insurance business model been addressed in a more cost effective manner and less invasive impact to the broader population.