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Importance Healthcare Reforms and for Governments

With the adoption of healthcare reforms in the United States followed by the implementation of the bill on health reforms passed in 2010 as from 2014, all uninsured people are required to pay health insurance coverage. They are to do this either individually or through a plan arrived at with the employers. Failure to do this, they will be subjected to a tax penalty. In this light, this paper clarifies the necessity of healthcare reforms in the United States.

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Statistics indicate that nearly half of the American population or about 160 million people obtain health insurance via their employers. Additionally, about 50 million people have no insurance at all (Gerard et al, 2003, p.231: Gale, 2006, p.26). Many other Americans cover their healthcare expenses through privately bought insurance covers or government programs among them Medicare and Medicaid (Berkowitz, 2008, p.84: Budetti, 2004, p.2003). Many Americans cannot afford this covers. Hence, reforms are necessary to ease the accessibility to healthcare. The council of economic advisors who claim that, by 2040, expenses on the healthcare service would account for more than 34 percent of gross GDP (Himmelstein et al, 2009, p.741) reinforces this argument. Medicaid and Medicare would spend about 15 percent of GDP. Healthcare reforms would make about 54 million people who cannot currently access Medicare and Medicaid programs to access quality healthcare.

Through healthcare reforms, it becomes possible for the government to adopt and develop the ability to ensure that affordable, patient-centered, and well-coordinated healthcare services are availed to patients who critically need them. In this context, healthcare reforms are critical in ensuring that healthcare services are provided efficiently and effectively (Woolhandler & Himmelstein, 1997, p.773). Such healthcare services are community accountable, culturally accountable and ones, which can reduce healthcare disparities that are based on age, race, culture, and poverty levels (Sorensen, 2010, p.556). Essentially, the adopted healthcare reforms allow self-employed people and uninsured people to purchase insurance covers via exchanges that are state-based. The reforms also make it possible for “individuals and families whose income is between 133-400 percent of the poverty levels to have accessibility to healthcare insurance through the subsidies” (Kavilanz, 2011, p.113). Consequently, healthcare reform is effective in bridging the gap that has existed with accessibility to quality healthcare based on poverty levels.

Politics in healthcare exist claiming that healthcare reforms would increase employers’ expenses. Nevertheless, the increment in the employer’s expenses is justified by the resulting additional benefits on the employer. For instance, to maintain and increase the productivity of employees, employers have to attend to the healthcare concerns of their employees (Sorensen, 2010, p.555) and work on increasing their satisfaction (Bush, 2012, p.1329). In this context, the necessity of healthcare reforms is that, by increasing accessibility of the employees to quality healthcare, employers are capacitated to have a multidimensional view of their wellness programs, reengineer and focus on documentable, substantive, and positive elements that may influence the health of their employees coupled with their satisfaction.

Lastly, reforms in healthcare are essential in aiding the United States to ensure that her primary healthcare is optimized. According to Terry (2011), this can be realized through putting in place mechanisms of ensuring accessibility, accountability, and affordability of healthcare (p.30). Healthcare reforms can play proactive roles in this end. Arguably, therefore, while the US focuses on adopting holistic approaches towards ensuring that all her people afford primary healthcare, utilization of health insurance services in meeting treatment expenses at the community-based health centers can increase the rate of medical care delivery to all people in the U.S amid their differences. This is because primary healthcare constitutes an essential element akin to any reform aimed at hiking the accessibility to healthcare via primary healthcare portal.

Conclusively, healthcare reforms are necessary since they help in increasing the accessibility and affordability of quality primary healthcare. Consequently, the reforms signed into law in 2010 are substantive in availing quality healthcare to all Americans amid their demographic and social-economic differences.

References

Berkowitz, E. (2008). Medicare and Medicaid: the past as prologue. Health Care Finance Review, 29(3), 81-93.

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Budetti, P. (2004). 10 years beyond health security act failure: subsequent developments and persistent problems. JAMA, 292(16), 2000-2006.

Bush, P. (2012). Leadership at all levels. American journal of Health System Pharmacy, 69 (1), 1326-1330.

Gale, T. (2006). Key milestones in Medicare and Medicaid history, selected years: 1956-2003. Health Care Finance Review, 27(2), 25-33.

Gerard, A., et al. (2003). Process: Why United States is so different from other. Health Affairs, 22(3), 231-139.

Himmelstein, D., Thorne, D., Warren, E., & Woolhandler, S. (2009). Medical bankruptcy in the United States, 2007: results of a national study. The American Journal of Medicine, 122(8), 741–746.

Kavilanz, P. (2011). Healthcare reform stands: how it impacts employers. Journal of health politics, 13(2), 113-119.

Sorensen, A. (2010). Health Reform’s Incredible Significance and Why It Won’t Matter. Journal of Health and Medicine, 2(1), 556-567.

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Terry, L. (2011). Health Care Fraud and What to do about It. Cornell: Cornell University Press.

Woolhandler, S., & Himmelstein, D. ( 1997). Costs of care and administration at for-profit and other hospitals in the United States. The New England Journal of Medicine, 336 (11): 769–774.

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