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Public Policy Meeting Summary

The Meeting

The purpose of the meeting lies in need to discuss the Affordable Care Act Replacement Bill and various associated factors. The key participants are senior correspondents of Kaiser Health News Julie Rovner and Mary Agnes Carey. Key agenda items include the discussion of the effects that the ACARB would cause, such as the loss of insurance by more than 20 million people, the stability of the act, the debate around the act and other aspects.

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The Committee

The committee included Mary Agnes Carey and Julie Rovner. Carey is a senior correspondent and partnerships editor of Kaiser Health News. She oversees the nationwide placement of Kaiser Health News material in various publications. Her history of work includes Capitol Hill Bureau Chief for Congressional Quarterly, associate editor position at CQ HealthBeat, and a reporter position for Down Jones Newswires (“Mary Agnes Carey,” 2017).

Rovner worked as a policy correspondent for 16 at NPR. She focused on the coverage of the creation and implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Rovner wrote a book called “Health Care Politics and Policy A-Z” to high critical acclaim. She is a recipient of the National Press Foundation’s Everett McKinley Dirksen Award for distinguished reporting of Congress. Currently, she is a Senior Chief Washington Correspondent for the Kaiser Health News (“Julie Rovner,” 2017).

Both members are highly knowledgeable about on the topic of health policy. Their experience allows them to provide evidence-based answers to almost any questions asked by the audience and the host of the program.

The Topic

The primary topic of the meeting is the Affordable Care Act Replacement Bill and its implications for the citizens of the United States. The topic was discussed in a question and answer form. The discussion began with the host John McArdle asking questions about the millions of people who are going to lose their insurance if the new act passes, and how those numbers are calculated. Subsequently, viewers and listeners of the program called in to ask additional questions from the committee. While the nature of the questions ranged from the interest of the uninsured to search for possible alternatives to the act, the majority of the conversation was dedicated to its implications. The committee described in detail that people who make up the millions of uninsured are not constantly uninsured. Their condition depends on constant changes in their wage, as well as other aspects that may change after the regular appraisal (“Kaiser Health News Correspondents,” 2017).

Stakeholder Positions

Due to the extremely partisan nature of the topic, the stakeholders are divided, at times with little concern for the implications of the act. Some callers expressed displeasure with the way the bill is treated in the media and believed that the original Affordable Care Act needs to be repealed, no matter what. This position is shared by a portion of the Republican Party members that support the new act. However, those callers that are currently insured have expressed concerns for their families, loved ones, and colleagues who may be negatively affected by the act. The committee and those politicians who voted against the act share a similar view. They see the replacement act as either incomplete or outright harmful to a large number of people who may lose their insurance if the act passes. This number includes a wide range of people but especially those who cannot afford healthcare without the Affordable Care Act. The tax breaks that the act allows the rich are also seen in a negative light by the callers who were against it.

Key Interactions

Key interactions during the meeting involved callers contacting the committee from various walks of life. A call from a veteran touched upon how this bill does not have a separate mention of veterans, despite having a potential effect on more than 400,000 of them. Another caller mentioned how Medicare does not provide methadone maintenance, and while the current population of older people does not require such treatment, the next might need it, and the coverage would have to increase to provide for them. Some of the most important interactions concerned people who voiced their reasons for the inability to afford insurance without the Affordable Care Act and the majority of cases show that even people responsible for the provision of healthcare, may not be able to afford the insurance they provide. The socioeconomic factors that are related to this issue play a very large role, and the poorest people are likely to be affected the most.

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The meeting provided answers to a great variety of questions concerning the Affordable Care Act Replacement Bill and the Affordable Care Act itself. The additional information allowed for better understanding of the issues and implications of the bill. In addition, rarely discussed points of view were touched upon. These issues include the number of people affected by the changes, effectiveness, and sustainability of the bill, issues of fraud and how the bill may change in the future.


Julie Rovner. (2017). Web.

Kaiser health news correspondents on Affordable Care Act Replacement Bill. (2017). Web.

Mary Agnes Carey. (2017). Web.

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