Obama health care refers to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, which was formulated with the intention of increasing accessibility to insurance health insurance. In addition, there is an expectation that the program will reduce the budget deficit significantly by increasing Medicare taxes on individuals with high-income, reducing hospital payments, the assessment of penalties charged on individuals who do not take insurance and evaluation of taxes on different health activities (Whitehouse 1). Moreover, the act protects the health insurance customer such that individuals with pre-existing conditions can receive coverage, and insurance products are to cover emergency room services (Healthcare 1). Other services to be catered for include mental and behavioral health treatment, maternity care, drug prescription, outpatient care, lab tests, pediatric care, as well as specialized care for individuals with chronic conditions, physical disability, or injuries (Healthcare 1). The policy aims at ensuring that most of the American citizens have access to affordable health insurance and a broad variety of health care services with a minimal increase in cost.
The program’s coverage will commences on 1 January 2014; individuals who do not have health insurance coverage of any sort by then will pay tax at a rate of 1% of their income or the option of remitting $ 95 to the government (Obamacarefacts 1). The government intends to increase health care insurance coverage of Americans to ensure that the population’s production at a high level, which is achievable if most of the population is healthy. Hence, the government will tax individuals who fail to enroll for health insurance, and penalize employers who refuse to enroll their employees. An increase in health insurance enrollment will reduce America’s budget deficit, which means that the country can channel the saved money to other area that need development. This initiative is particularly beneficial at the individual level because one will receive more insurance health coverage at a minimal increase in cost. Individual standards of living will increase because insurers do not have the option of turning down pre-existing health conditions and chronic illnesses. Another positive contribution is that individuals who cannot afford health insurance will be enrolled into Medicaid under the sponsorship of the federal government.
The downside of the program is that individuals who cannot afford insurance and cannot be covered under Medicaid will be taxed at 1% of their income. This will increase their expenses, and reduce their spending options. This initiative also increases the cost of living for individuals who have an income of over $200,000 because they will remit Medicare taxes of 2.35% of their income up from 1.45% (Obamacarefacts 1). Moreover, there is the expectation that the cost of medicine will rise because the drug companies are to pay $84 billion to sort the donut-hole issue that is in Medicare (Obamacarefacts 1).
The measures put in place by the Obama health care are beneficial if they increase health insurance coverage and service delivery at a fair cost. The initiative will be counterproductive if there is a sharp increase in the cost of buying drugs, the premiums payable to insurance companies, and taxation because this will make access to health insurance unreachable and increase the cost of living for all Americans. Therefore, the government should measure the effects of the various changes within the phases of executing the policy to ensure that the intention of increasing health insurance coverage is met feasibly.
Healthcare. “How does the health care law protect me?”. U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Web. 29 Sept. 2013.
Obamacarefacts. “How Does ObamaCare Work?”. Obamacare. Web. 29 Sept. 2013.
Whitehouse. “Deficit-Reducing Health Care Reform”. The Whitehouse. Web. 29 Sept. 2013.