As the Affordable Care Act continues to build in momentum, many have dissected the bill and come to a series of possible improvements for the ACA. In an article printed in the Huffington Post, Dr. Stephen Ondra—Chief Medical Officer for the HCSC, the largest consumer-owned health insurance company in the U.S.—provided a detailed analysis of ways the Affordable Care Act can be improved.
Dr. Ondra highlighted several wins from the ACA since its signing in March of 2010. Among those achievements include an average of 20 million insured individuals who were previously uninsured, along with increasing the age to maintain coverage on a parents’ plan to 26 and eliminating health care denial due to preexisting conditions. Above all, Ondra states that the ACA has made health care reform a greater priority. While the ACA has made many strides in health care, Dr. Ondra expressed a series of suggestions for improvement.
These suggestions include modifying the Health Insurance Marketplace. With the acceptance of those individuals with pre-existing conditions comes huge costs on behalf of insurance companies to provide health care to such individuals. This creates an imbalance in the makeup of individuals who are covered through the Marketplace because those individuals who are healthy may place healthcare as a lower priority and thus less likely to seek such coverage. Therefore, Ondra suggests allowing for a more diverse participation in obtaining health care. Other sources of improvement involve incentive programs for participating insurance companies, consolidating coverage options to avoid wasting funds on duplicate services, as well as improving technology all around—from obtaining insurance to advancement in medical technology. While the Affordable Care Act has done plenty of good for Americans, there still is, of course, more work to do.
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