A divided Supreme Court upheld most of the Obama administration’s health care law, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), ruling that the law’s penalty for those who ignore a mandate to carry health insurance counted as a tax and was authorized under Congress’s power to raise and collect taxes.
The federal-state Medicaid program was found unconstitutional, however, with the Court ruling that the federal government cannot impose sanctions on states’ existing Medicaid funding if the states decline to participate in the Medicaid expansion.
The law was designed to bring health insurance to more than 30 million previously uninsured Americans and to slow down increasing medical costs. How will this judgment impact the nation’s 691,000 physicians?*
Today, we asked physicians around the country to share their thoughts on this paradigm-shifting legislation. Let us know your opinion. Please join the discussion and let your viewpoint be known.
Because the Affordable Care Act (ACA) includes many provisions that benefit children, the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) applauds the Supreme Court’s ruling. The ACA allows young adults to stay on their parents’ health insurance up to age 26, prevents insurers from dropping coverage when a child becomes ill, increases payment under Medicaid to Medicare levels for at least 2 years (currently in Georgia Medicaid pays roughly 2/3 of the Medicare rate), increases funding for training of Pediatric sub-specialists (Georgia’s per capita rate of Pediatric sub-specialists is well below national averages in nearly every field) and encourages children to have a Medical Home where they can receive coordinated care. The Georgia AAP hopes that in future discussions about the ACA and healthcare reform all political parties at the state and national level will keep the needs of children at the forefront.
Robert Wiskind, M.D.
Peachtree Park Pediatrics
President-Elect, American Academy of Pediatrics, Georgia Chapter
Anything that improves access of care for children is wonderful! This also poses a challenge, however. It’s important that our medical community ensures that we are prepared for the influx of patients that have not had access to the system and that the quality of care we provide does not suffer, but in fact improves. That will require continued innovation in patient care.
Brad Weselman, M.D.
Snapfinger Woods Pediatrics
Chairman of Quality and Utilization Management,
Kids Health First Pediatric Alliance
Though not perfect, the Affordable Care Act is a large step forward in protecting families and children who have significant healthcare needs.
Jacquelin Gotlieb, M.D.
The Pediatric Center
*according to 2010 Bureau of Labor statistics