The ACA’s Role in Transforming American Health Insurance

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Updated: Sep 07, 2023
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One of the main challenges facing the American healthcare system is the high number of the uninsured patients. Prior to the adoption of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a larger number of Americans were uninsured. However, with its adoption, historic gains in Medicaid coverage to a several low-income households were achieved and it provide Marketplace subsidies to people under 400% of poverty line. It effectively reduced the number of the uninsured from a massive 44 million individuals in 2013 to a little under 28 million by 2016.

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Healthcare is a basic need for all the citizens. Therefore every citizen has a right to receiving quality health care services. The right to good health and healthcare is protected by the constitution that entitles every member of the society a right to this necessity. Despite being a basic need, the access to quality healthcare services is still limited to a section of the society, particularly the low income and the marginalized groups. Given their financial position, quality health care is unaffordable to this group of persons, thus making them to live a poor life. This is evidenced by the highly mortality rate among the low incomes in the society.

As a way of making healthcare affordable to all Americans independent of their social and economic status, the ACA (Affordable Care Act) or called the Obamacare was enacted in 2010. The primary objective of the ACA was to reduce the cost of medication and healthcare costs through the expansion of private and public health insurance cover: broader Medicare coverage and Medicaid legibility, and regulated and subsidized private medical insurance schemes. The Act also proposed amendments to the healthcare bill including eliminations of insurance cover barriers based on the client’s pre-existing conditions, affordable insurance premium to all applicants, promotion of health insurance exchange.

The ACA is important to this debate because it outlines the provision, policies, and regulations in the healthcare industry that would be significant in reduce the costs of medication burden to the common Americans independent of their race, economic and social status, age, or sex. The Act is therefore important in improving the quality of life through increased access to quality and affordable healthcare services. The US healthcare system has been under constant criticism from many circles that range from the discontent general population and the congress. President Obama’s Obamacare Program had many opponents, despite the president strongly championing for its application. The president proposed this program on the basis of affordability and ready coverage to the massive numbers of people who are unable to pay for their cancer treatment, hospital bills or high surgery costs. The significant question arising from this bill is whether insurance cover to the millions of uninsured is the solution to the American health system or whether the solution lies in increasing the quality and efficiency of delivery of healthcare services or both.

Data and evidence from research indicate that there is a strong correlation between these two big problems that plague the system. The healthcare insurance system in America faces challenges that must be urgently remedied to promote the health of the nation. Insurance cover costs are high as apparently roughly 45 million Americans are uninsured against the many diseases that strike anytime. Lack of insurance cover is a problem because Americans and foreigners living in America are not able to fully cover the high costs that come from seeking treatment for various ailments. Generally, an appointment with a specialized doctor would be about $100 an hour or even double this cost. The homeless or low-income earners barely manage to feed their children and paying a bit of tuition fee, food, and other bills. Poor people experience financial constraints after the appointment to pay for the treatment programs that are recommended if they are diagnosed with a certain ailment.

The administration has to take concrete steps in the area of insurance in order to ensure that people take good care of their health. Naturally, people like to live life a day at a time and rarely visit doctors unless they are ill. The reactive rather than proactive culture is lethal to the US healthcare system. Insurance cover is not an enough guarantee of good healthcare, but leads to neglect since it creates a reactive mindset. Most people get insured because of the risk of contracting cancer where they will need too much funds to cater for this disease. Obtaining insurance cover is, therefore, unfortunately seen as a kind of investment against future expenses to be incurred. Bearing the attitude behind insurance, it would be important for administrators to ensure responsibility on the side of all the citizens. Insurance companies need to formulate policies that would check against abuse by people, but maintain their integrity and help promote healthcare for the populations.

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The ACA's Role in Transforming American Health Insurance. (2019, Aug 02). Retrieved from