respond in 3rd person to the following post., must follow rubric guidelines pls.
Bodenheimer and Grumbach (2016) describe access to healthcare as “the number of times a person uses health care services” (p. 23). Access to healthcare, as is described in the text is affected by several variables. Among those variables is health insurance. The Affordable Care Act, enacted in 2010, was designed to make healthcare more affordable, to expand Medicaid coverage, and to support alternative methods of healthcare delivery to lower costs (“Affordable care act”, n.d.). Though the Affordable Care Act addresses the insurance variable, it does not address gender, ethnicity, transportation, language, or any of the other variables that Bodenheimer and Grumbach (2016) associate with access to healthcare.
The Affordable Care Act has increased access to care. Sommers, Gunja, Finegold, and Musco (2015) used the results of a telephone survey to examine the participants’ health status, possession of a personal physician, affordability of healthcare, and access to medicine. The researchers determined that there was a decrease in the number of patients who reported that they did not have healthcare insurance, did not have a personal physician, did not have easy access to care, were not able to afford care, and who reported poor health. It was noted that the groups with the largest change were the patients from minority groups. In addition, the inclusion of Medicaid expansion was attributed to improvements in the reporting of patients in the low-income categories (Sommers, et al., 2015). The study by Sommers, et al. (2015) acknowledged a worsening of statistics in the years prior to the enactment of the Affordable Care Act, but report that the improvement in the statistics may be the result of the Act.
Miller and Wherry (2017) studied access to care following the first two years of the Affordable Care Act. They discovered that there were significant reductions in persons reporting that they were unable to afford care. In addition to examining patient’s self-reports of health and the affordability of care, Miller and Wherry studied the reports of new diagnoses of hypertension and diabetes. In the first year after the expansion of Medicaid, there was an increase in new cases of diabetes and hypertension. Miller and Wherry attributed this increase to better access to care.
If we focus on insurance as the determinant for access to healthcare, and overlook all of the other barriers to care, the Affordable Care Act has increased access to healthcare. The studies completed by Sommers, et al. (2015) and Miller and Wherry (2017) cite specific examples that demonstrate the increased access to care as a result of the Affordable Care Act. In regard to the non-financial barriers to care that are cited by Bodenheimer and Grumbach (2016), the United States has some work to do to eliminate disparities in healthcare.