Health care reform - Assignment Example

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Like any service, health services come at a premium, which is collected from customers (or “patients”) so that the system can function. However, unlike all other services, health services increase (or, when they are substandard, decrease) an individual’s chances of surviving longer; …
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Health care reform
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Download file to see previous pages Because of these costs, many Americans still continue to go on without health insurance, despite the risks that brings. This crisis has forced some to lobby for an increase in the federal government’s role to lower costs of healthcare and increase coverage. Although it may be quite some time before a universal health plan comes to fruition, it would behoove the key players involved to understand the effects such a plan would have on the nation as a whole.
Perhaps the industry and sector of the economy most affected by healthcare reform is the insurance companies. While it may seem as though insurance companies would be hurt substantially by a healthcare overhaul by the federal government, it seems more likely that insurance will be subsidized rather than eliminated. That means that millions of new customers, who could not pay for their own health insurance coverage, will be entering the insurance market with vouchers from the federal government. In fact, when the Congress approved healthcare reform in 2009, stock prices in health insurance companies rose considerably (Drum, 2009). Because the government is financing all of these insurance accounts, the insurance companies will be able to make a greater profit. In contrast, under a universal healthcare system, the need for insurance companies would be altogether eliminated.
Another key player in healthcare reform is the federal and state governments. President Obama ran on a platform of overhauling the system of healthcare in the United States. While pushing for a universal system to begin with, the President ultimately settled for a reform measure that embraced insurance companies (Guilloton, 2011). The federal government thus plays a role in making health coverage affordable, which means subsidizing individual accounts for those who cannot reasonably afford health insurance. This has the effect of increasing demand for healthcare services (that is, by making more individuals able to pay for them) while keeping the supply of healthcare services the same. State governments are, in their current role, able to accept or reject optional policies offered by the federal government program. Thus, the degree to which people who cannot afford insurance can access these healthcare services will differ from state to state (Guilloton, 2011) Employers are an often-overlooked part of the reform equation (Simon, 2010). Given that nearly 61 percent of working people in the United States had employer-based insurance in 2008, these reforms will have a central role in determining their plans. In general, however, larger employers will be required to keep their insurance programs under threat of fine. Smaller employers will face fines for not providing coverage to their employees. Another hope of healthcare reform is that individuals, also under threat of fine, will be incentivized to find health insurance coverage, either if it is through their employer or through an insurance company. For those Americans who live under the poverty level, a subsidized form of insurance is provided only if those individuals (and their families) do not have employment-based coverage. The government’s roles in setting these conditions is a function of their goal to lower healthcare costs, which employers can have a central ro ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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Brilliant paper! Used it to finish an assignment for a health sciences & medicine course. It was easy as ABC, for the first time in my life.

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