The healthcare debate continues in this country and it has become a hot button topic in the Presidential election. At the core of it all is the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, which was designed to make sure every American citizen has sufficient and affordable health coverage. The aim is to get everyone insured whether or not they have pre-existing conditions and keep costs of healthcare low so no one has to declare bankruptcy should they become seriously ill or face some other significant medical problem.
There are many critics of the law and House Republicans have voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act over fifty times, to no avail. For now, this law is here to stay despite the doom and gloom put forth by those who have been seeking to defeat Obamacare.
One of the more prevalent arguments that detractors make against the law is that it puts a strain on the national deficit. This, like many other assertions, is simply not true. The truth of the matter is that Obamacare not only represents a decrease of the deficit and brings down debt along with it, but repealing it at this point would increase budget deficits by nearly $350 billion dollars through the next decade.
How Obamacare Helps the Deficit
The main reason for implementing the Affordable Care Act was to help bring the costs of healthcare down to manageable levels. The law has been written to put a limit on this spending and generate revenue at the same time. Long-term projections for healthcare spending come with estimates that will see a marked slow-down in the rate of spending between the years 2015 and 2022.
The Affordable Care Act has already seen that spending reach its slowest pace since 1960. Inflation of healthcare costs are also at their lowest levels in fifty years.
President Obama introduced the Affordable Care to present a counterbalance to the spending that is found in government programs, subsidies, and provisions including things like Medicare, and Medicaid. However, the mandates within the law have gone directly to the root of the problem, the rising costs of healthcare.
The Affordable Care Act limits these costs, combats insurance fraud, and even helps to recover taxpayer revenue that was being wasted due to fraud at a rate of $19.2 billion. Making healthcare more affordable for all Americans also brings down the number of people relying on government programs that can negatively impact the deficit and the national debt.
Before Obamacare, health insurance companies were charging exorbitant rates for coverage, driving more people to depend on government assistance for care. Now that the companies have been restricted in what they can charge for policies and who gets covered, the costs are not just brought down, but the strain on government funds is minimized as well.
The projection of net costs of the Affordable Care Act is currently set at $76 billion with an uptick in those costs estimated to reach just $1.35 trillion over the next ten years. The rise in costs will be the most dramatic and steady through 2022 at which point these will level off and show far less of an increase through 2025.