The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was introduced six years ago in the healthcare industry.
With a promise of putting in place integrated health insurance reform, which will reduce health care costs, hold insurance companies accountable, expand coverage and improve the overall quality of care for all Americans, it seems the $3 trillion healthcare industry might be losing its plot in the turbulent political playbook.
As if speculations were not enough, the election of Donald Trump has spurred anxiety among people and other industry leaders, who were stunned his unexpected victory in the just concluded elections.
Now, the Trump administrators are looking forward to repeal and replace Obamacare with Trump card. Very likely, the Obamacare Act will soon transmute from a political mess to a pocketbook crisis. As seen from the election campaigning days, Trump has been very vocal about his views about the health policies.
His conflicting and vague remarks on the policy had left many industry pundits scratching their heads for any substitutes for the federal health law.
In an interview with CBS 60 Minutes on November 13th, Trump said that the act will be replaced and repealed. At the same time, he also promised to conserve popular necessities of the law, such as allowing young adults to stay on their parent’s health care plan and ensuring people get insurance with their preexisting conditions.
According to Charles (Chip) Kahn, the chief executive (CEO) of the Federation of American Hospitals, “health groups had not met the Republicans related to the revision of the law before the election, as they have a working assumption that the program they had was not moving anywhere.
But, currently, that working assumption is not functioning. “ He also added that, “ Upsetting the health law is not going to benefit much, rather it is going to create turmoil in the healthcare industry, which has already invested greatly in various strategies related to the ACA financial incentives.
The unexpected result has already left many people in the industry baffled. On the other side, many have issued statements in favour of the elected administrations as they are waiting for more clarity and awareness from the next president.”
Donald Crane, CAPG head (a national trade group for physician organisations) had earlier said in an interview that, “they were totally unprepared for such a results, and didn’t even anticipate the other effects.
They had no plan B for this process.” The unanticipated result has scattered the industry section, which the Obama administration had carefully implemented to support the law. But, looking ahead, there are many reasons for the health sector to worry about.
The healthcare industry may be quite susceptible to the suggested changes, which could run into loss of millions of health coverage for Americans, both through insurance exchanges and extension in the Medicaid program for lower-income group.
Back in 2009, hospitals had made a deal with the Obama administration and Congress for the introduction of the Affordable Care Act. They had agreed to the terms of significant cuts in Medicaid and Medicare reimbursement, predicting that these cuts would be balanced by increasing the payments of newly insured customers.
However, other sectors appear to have a low or negligible risk as far as the results are concerned. The pharmaceutical industry stands on the threshold of losing paying customers if the laws are changed as more and more people are going to lose their coverage.
This could be a winning point for the Republican Congress and Trump administrators. Because the industry will be facing less risk of the price control that the Democrats have promised to implement, if elected.
Trump had already mentioned that during his campaigning days, but there is no concrete reference to drug pricing on the health agenda outline mentioned on his transition website.
Players have expressed varied feelings about a possible repeal. The Government administration-led exchanges where customers can purchase federally supported coverage are a key stake of Obamacare.
But numerous insurers have protested about losing their money in those markets because a large number of sick people is signing up and healthy consumers are sitting out.
Some industry officials have predicted that the exchanges will get cut off and the Republicans will try to move some of that insurance coverage to include Medicaid programs.
One of the major development opportunities for insurers under Obamacare Act has been the extension of Medicaid controlled-care contracts under which private organisations will take responsibility for a huge group of people with low-income in a stable amount of money.