What is Health Care Reform?

what is health care reform

Health care reform refers to the practice of changing how a country provides or pays for the health care of its citizens. This process typically includes developing policies and strategies that address issues that contribute to high costs, inadequate coverage or poor quality health care delivery – whether this means legislation, regulations or incentives; reform is continually being pursued worldwide.

At the onset of Bill Clinton’s presidency in the US, an effort to reform healthcare took place with great intensity during its early years. Under first Lady Hillary’s direction, a cabinet-level Task Force was assembled with the aim of reforming America’s health care system through comprehensive changes. Unfortunately, however, its 1,342-page plan never saw any votes as it met strong resistance from Republicans and industry groups.

Though this initiative failed, other health care reforms have been put in place in various states such as Massachusetts and Hawaii to help decrease uninsured population while also improving quality health care delivery services; yet these measures still haven’t solved all problems; national reform is necessary.

The current Obama Administration has prioritized healthcare reform as one of its top goals, passing and enacting legislation intended to expand access to affordable health insurance while improving care quality. Furthermore, new initiatives offer various consumer safeguards against insurers taking unfair advantage of individuals.

These changes were implemented through the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Along with providing access, this major health reform has implemented measures designed to control rising health care prices while simultaneously improving quality. As part of its provisions, some new provisions were included within this act:

Prior to the ACA’s implementation, many Americans were subject to lifetime dollar limits imposed by their insurance providers. Now these caps are being gradually lifted for over 105 million individuals – increasing affordability.

Strengthen Review of Rate Increases

Now, every state must review requests by insurance companies for rate increases and provide public notice prior to approving these rates – helping ensure affordable healthcare insurance is accessible by many Americans.

Lastly, the Affordable Care Act is also making other improvements that will enhance American healthcare more efficiently and equitable. For instance, efforts are being taken to shift medical care away from fee for service and towards results rather than activities, rewarding doctors for producing better outcomes with higher payments while simultaneously lowering costs to patients and the system as a whole.

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