Pros and Cons of Obamacare (also known as Affordable Care Act) are hotly debated. Your opinions may depend on your political ideologies as well as what role the federal government should play in providing healthcare access for Americans.
Proponents of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) contend it has enabled millions of Americans to gain health coverage, as well as enhanced patient outcomes and decreased healthcare costs.
1. Access to low-cost insurance
Obamacare makes it easier and more affordable to find health coverage, while also offering many consumer protections.
Affordable Care Act-compliant health plans must provide coverage regardless of any preexisting conditions, provide preventive care without out-of-pocket expenses and allow you to remain on your parents’ plan until age 26.
Individuals earning under 400% of the federal poverty level may qualify for premium subsidies to assist them in purchasing coverage on the Marketplace. These savings are determined based on factors like income and household size rather than employment status.
Before the Affordable Care Act was in place, sicker individuals frequently paid higher premiums or were denied coverage altogether. With this law in effect, all citizens must now carry insurance coverage, which has spread out the risks across a wider pool and reduced costs overall. Furthermore, Medicaid also covers low-income adults in certain states.
2. Preventing insurance companies from denying coverage for preexisting conditions
Before the Affordable Care Act was implemented, insurance companies could deny coverage for preexisting conditions, charge higher premiums, or forgo certain benefits altogether. But these practices were outlawed under the ACA.
As part of their mandates, plans must provide categories of essential health benefits, such as prescription drugs, maternity care and behavioral health treatment. This ensures that those with serious conditions receive care they require without insurance companies excluding basic benefits that could help.
However, the Affordable Care Act presents several challenges. First of all, it may be difficult to enforce these protections against state-level insurers who aren’t required by law to offer them.
3. Providing financial assistance
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) offers sliding scale subsidies that lower premiums and out-of-pocket expenses for qualifying individuals, helping millions get access to health coverage they require.
Obamacare offers many advantages, and one is its protection from health insurance companies denying coverage based on preexisting conditions or due to pregnancy/childbearing status. Prior to the ACA many people could not get coverage due to preexisting conditions as well as pregnancy/childbearing status or being denied coverage entirely.
ACA also ensures that businesses with 50 or more full-time employees must offer health coverage to all of their workers, guaranteeing them access to high-quality and cost-effective health insurance options.
4. Increasing the number of uninsured
Even with policy attempts to decrease the uninsured rates, an increasing number of people remain without health coverage due to many factors including high costs of insurance policies, lack of job coverage and ineligibility for public programs.
The Affordable Care Act makes health insurance accessible for more Americans via online marketplaces known as exchanges, with substantial federal subsidies. It also encourages states to expand Medicaid programs so more low-income Americans are covered and requires insurance companies to accept those with preexisting conditions.
5. Increasing taxes
In addition to individual mandate tax and health insurance tax, the ACA also created new taxes on individuals and businesses through additional legislation imposed under it, such as Employer Mandate Tax, surtax on investment income and noncompliance with individual mandate.
The Congressional Budget Office estimates that these taxes will add an estimated $875 billion to our national debt in the next decade.
Furthermore, these taxes could result in an unexpected drop in employer coverage of health plans, potentially restricting employees’ access to care; those without coverage through their employers could then need to purchase health coverage on the nongroup market or enroll in Medicaid or CHIP for coverage.