Addressing the Problem of Drug Abuse in the US Essay

Before a policy can be created, a problem must exist that is called to the attention of the government. Illegal immigration, for example, has been going on for many years, but it was not until the 1990s that enough people considered it such a serious problem that it required increased government action. Another example is crime. American society tolerates a certain level of crime; however, when crime rises dramatically or is perceived to be rising dramatically, it becomes an issue for policymakers to address.

Consistent and effective policies at the federal level are critical to the success of government and nonprofit organizations. What factors determine a successful vs. ineffective public policy?

Write a paper in which you do the following:

Using a policy from the topic you chose in the Week 8 assignment:

  1. Provide a thorough background and history of your chosen policy. This should include what underlying issue the policy was intended to address, who the major influencers were in creating the policy, and when it was officially adopted. Title this section Background and History.
  2. In your opinion, was the policy a success or failure? Why? Be sure to list at least one positive and one negative outcome of the policy. Title this section Outcomes.
  3. Defend your position with substantial professional information and statistics. Title this section Your Position.

Answer:

Background and History

The policy chosen for analysis is the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. The ACA was enacted in March 2010 under the administration of President Barack Obama. The underlying issue the policy aimed to address was the lack of access to affordable healthcare coverage for millions of Americans. Prior to the ACA, many individuals faced barriers to obtaining health insurance due to pre-existing conditions, high premiums, and limited coverage options. The ACA aimed to expand access to healthcare coverage, improve quality of care, and reduce healthcare costs.

Major influencers in creating the ACA included policymakers, healthcare advocates, insurance companies, healthcare providers, and consumer advocacy groups. President Obama played a pivotal role in championing the legislation, alongside members of Congress who worked to draft and pass the bill. The ACA was officially adopted on March 23, 2010, when President Obama signed it into law.

Outcomes

In my opinion, the Affordable Care Act has had both positive and negative outcomes.

Positive Outcome:

  1. Increased Access to Healthcare: One of the primary goals of the ACA was to expand access to healthcare coverage, and it succeeded in reducing the uninsured rate in the United States. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the uninsured rate declined from 16% in 2010 to 8.8% in 2016, representing a significant increase in the number of Americans with health insurance coverage.

Negative Outcome:

  1. Rising Healthcare Costs: Despite efforts to control healthcare costs, the ACA has faced criticism for contributing to rising premiums and out-of-pocket expenses for some individuals and families. While subsidies provided through the ACA helped make coverage more affordable for many, others experienced increased costs, particularly in the individual market.

Your Position

In my opinion, the Affordable Care Act has been a success overall, despite its shortcomings. The positive outcomes of increased access to healthcare coverage and improved health outcomes for millions of Americans outweigh the negative aspects of rising costs.

Substantial professional information and statistics support this position. Studies have shown that the ACA led to significant reductions in the uninsured rate and improvements in access to preventive services, chronic disease management, and mental health services. Additionally, the ACA’s provisions, such as Medicaid expansion and subsidies for low-income individuals, have helped millions afford health insurance coverage.

While challenges remain, such as rising healthcare costs and ongoing political debates over the future of the ACA, the overall impact of the policy has been positive in expanding access to healthcare and improving the health and well-being of Americans across the country.

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