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The Influence of Obama Care Reforms on the Quality and Affordability of Primary Care

 

 

The Affordable Care Act, also known as Obama Care, is implemented to produce several radical changes in the way the American healthcare system is operating, including reducing costs, increasing the quality of medical care and providing affordable health insurance for Americans. Primary care providers and emergency care facilities, including the Front Range Primary Care medical clinic located Denver, CO, will be influenced in several ways, most of which are beneficial to their operation. The need for new regulations in the healthcare system derived from several problems that have become deeper and more severe every year. Before the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the number of uninsured Americans was progressively increasing towards reaching the number of 50 million individuals in 2010, which is about one in every six Americans. The insurance companies were able to deny insurance coverage to individuals who had pre-existing health problems or to increase the insurance premiums based on undisclosed parameters, which deprives the patients who really need medical attention of adequate care. The income difference between medical specialists and primary care physicians was huge, and most of the insurance money were going to large hospitals and specialists, while the PCP's were left with a small piece of the “healthcare funds” pie. 

Obama Care Means More Patients for Primary Care Providers 

ACA includes strict regulations regarding the ability of insurance companies to increase insurance premiums. Under the new regulations, insurance companies are no longer able to increase premiums based on their evaluation of the individual’s pre-existing health conditions, health risks, the individual’s occupation and other parameters that would allow insurance providers to make money rather than provide cost-effective health insurance coverage. ACA stipulates that the only parameters that allow insurance companies to modify the insurance price are age, income, tobacco consumption, family size and geographical location. Wealthy Americans whose income is above 400 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) are expected to pay more for their insurance, while individuals who earn less than 400 percent FPL will pay less and qualify for subsidies. These changes will affect primary care providers like the Front Range Primary Care medical clinic through an increased number of patients who can now afford medical insurance and will definitely be encouraged to seek medical attention for their health problems. Are PCP's ready for the surge of new patients? Our physicians believe they are. This wave of new patients will also be associated with attractive incentives for PCP's based on the quality of the provided medical care, which will reduce the income difference between them and the other medical specialists. 

The Affordable Care Act also includes regulations regarding the efficiency of healthcare costs, which should provide a natural selection favoring the medical facilities that provide high-quality medical care at a lower cost and inhibit the facilities that have trouble managing their costs while failing to increase the quality of their services. The physicians and nurses working at the Front Range Primary Care clinics believe that ACA is associated with positive changes for medical professionals who continuously improve the quality of their services, which should inevitably translate into more patients and higher financial rewards for experienced, hard-working doctors. 

 

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