Health Care Reform Essay

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Health care reform in the United States is a vital issue. Over the years, multiple Presidents have attempted to address reform but significant political obstacles have prevented any major change since the Social Security Act which established Medicaid and Medicare in 1965 (Kaiser Family Foundation [KFF], 2009). On March 23, 2010, President Barack Obama signed into law The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). The premise of this legislation was to increase access to care by allowing more Americans to gain access to coverage and to impact the rising cost of healthcare in the country. After its implementation, between one and three million Americans ages 18 – 26 gained access to health insurance through coverage eligibility…show more content…
There are four categories of quality measures used in pay-for-performance: process measures, outcome measures, patient experience, and structure measures. Process measures evaluate activities which positively affect health outcomes for patients. Outcome measures determine the effects the care provided have on the patient. Patient experience encompasses the patients’ satisfaction with the services received. Structure measures evaluate the equipment used by facilities, as well as the personnel employed by the facilities (James, 2012). As of 2016, expenditures for hospital readmissions were estimated at twelve billion dollars a year (Mason et al., 2016). These costs are many times unnecessary and avoidable. Medicare’s Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program can reduce payments by one percent to hospitals for readmissions for heart attacks, heart failure, or pneumonia in disproportionate amounts (James, 2012). It also will reward the hospitals that exceed the expectations set forth. The wide-ranging changes to healthcare policy impelled hospitals to discover other avenues for mitigating financial risks associated with the new policy. Patient coordination and discharge planning have become central to patient care. Case managers utilize medical homes, home care,

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