Defending Obamacare, Research Paper Example
Words: 1074Research Paper
In light of the recent Supreme Court Decision, millions of Americans have turned to the upcoming Presidential election as a source for continuing to debate and argue in favor or against the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. The Supreme Court ruled earlier this summer that the Affordable Care Act is in fact constitutional. The individual mandate was a primarily source of debate during the court deliberations and the justices found that because the “penalty” for the mandate is actually a tax, Obamacare is completely constitutional. Despite the ruling, the debate continues as Mitt Romney promises to repeal the law if he is voted in as President of the United States in the 2012 elections. The Affordable Care Act has already proved to be beneficial as millions of American have taken advantage of the preventative care provisions, lower costs for individuals and companies as an immediate benefit, and enabling millions of dependents to regain coverage under their parents’ plans.
One of the first important provisions under the Affordable Care Act is that preventative care measures such as an annual physical were now completely covered at no cost to the patient. “In 2011, an estimated 86 million Americans used provisions in the Affordable Care Act to get preventative care through their insurance plans, care that insurance companies previously subjected to co-pays or deductibles but now must provide for free” (“5 Reasons” par. 2). This not only provided a drastic improvement to the quantity of people who were able to obtain basic preventative services but it also logically created an overall increase in health care revenue for the industry as patients increased their follow-up appointments, obtained additional examinations and more procedures were performed. During a time when the economy clearly hurt most people and most companies, this simple provision in the Affordable Care Act provided a simple method for people to get preventative services completed while also increasing revenue in the same industry.
In addition to providing additional revenue to the industry and providing preventative health care services at no cost to the patient, most people and companies are experiencing financial benefits. First of all, “over 2.5 million seniors have saved an estimated $1.5 billion thanks to prescription drug discounts included in health care reform” (“5 reasons” par. 3). During a time when most people are complaining that Obamacare will destroy the Medicare system and drastically reduce Medicare funding, seniors are actually benefiting in ways that are extremely profound. Social Security checks and Medicare funding now go further than they did before when prescription drug discounts were unknown or did not even exist prior to the Affordable Care Act.
Furthermore, many companies are reaping the immediate benefits of Obamacare. Over 4 million small businesses are now eligible to claim a tax deduction for providing health insurance to their employees (“Fact Check”). Although this deduction may disappear in the future, it is easy to see that this is a key benefit that entices companies to continue to provide the same medical coverage that they have in the past as well as to entice new companies to consider offering health insurance that may not have done so prior to Obamacare. Since its passing, Obamacare is responsible for over a quarter-million small businesses having claimed the tax deductions and providing new health insurance for 2 million workers across the country (“5 reasons”).
In 2011 millions of young Americans and their parents were notified that child dependents were now eligible to receive medical coverage under their parents’ plans until the age of 26. Personally, I know that my older brother was one of the 2.5 million young people who was able to regain coverage under our parents’ medical plan (“The Pros and Cons”). This actually proved to be highly beneficial as my brother found that he had an abnormal growth on my back that needed to be removed. It did not ultimately prove to be cancerous; however, there was a sincere fear in our family that it could have been. Without this coverage gained under Obamacare, my brother and millions of other young people would not be able to have frequent check-ups and receive the medical coverage that they need.
Alternative arguments to Obamacare continue to arise despite the immediate benefits it has provided. Sources argue that as a result of health care reform, people will be losing the plans they currently have as a result of the new state exchanges being offered. The country is now adopting a similar system as auto insurance where the entire group, as a whole, now share the burden of paying for unhealthy, uninsured people (“The Pros and Cons”). Furthermore, the individual mandate places a penalty or “tax” on people who do not carry health insurance; regardless of its constitutionality, opponents to Obamacare are highly disenfranchised by this component of the law. Many of these arguments do hold clout and warrant discussion. The law is by no means perfect. The original intent of the law was to provide medical coverage for the millions of people who were otherwise not receiving it due to having no health insurance coverage. This law took a giant step in addressing that problem. However, as the elections in 2012 come to a close, further discussion must take place to properly address the individual mandate requirement and working to ease the mind of those individuals who do not want to see health care reform turn into a socialist system.
The Affordable Care Act has taken great strides in benefiting individuals and companies by providing increased eligibility in coverage, enabling preventative care coverage paid in full and lowering costs to those individuals and small businesses that need it the most. Many opponents raise very serious concerns about Obamacare, but it is important to note that very few strong alternatives have been made by these opponents. The difference is that Obamacare worked to solve a problem by shaking up an already broken system; whereas, opponents to Obamacare simply argue and rant without providing any solution to the real problem – people need health care and it should be considered an inalienable right without regard to personal income, status or insurance coverage.
“5 Reasons ObamaCare Is Already Good for You.” Fox News. FOX News Network, 28 Mar. 2012. Web. 05 Aug. 2012. <http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/03/28/5-reasons-obamacare-is-already-good-for/>.
“Fact Check: What Are the Pros and Cons of Obama’s Health Law?” – News-Sentinel.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Aug. 2012. <http://www.news-sentinel.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120702/NEWS/120709945/1006>.
“The Pros and Cons Of ObamaCare.” Civilians News. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Aug. 2012. <http://civiliansnews.com/2012/05/13/pros-cons-obamacare/>.
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