The derailment of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) has given the supporters of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) much to be joyous about. But many are wondering what happens next in the healthcare debate.
The future of American health care remains uncertain. It was only a few weeks ago that the Affordable Care Act narrowly evaded the congressional guillotine a mere seven years after its installation.
This summer, Illinois passed a law set to take effect in the beginning of this year that stipulated that any doctors who cite conscience-based objection to abortion must have a system in place to give information about or provide referrals to providers who will perform abortions.
With the future of the Affordable Care Act uncertain under President Trump, many Americans are left worrying how they will manage without health care. The Americans who must shoulder this burden are disproportionately people of color. It should come as no surprise to those familiar with the history of health care in this country that once again our system, purportedly built to protect and promote health, is systematically ignoring the right to health care for communities of color.
On January 20, 2017, Donald J. Trump was inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States, giving control of the White House, the House and the Senate to the Republican Party. Congress is expected to move quickly on President Trump’s agenda: one of the top priorities is the repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
On a late March day in 2010, President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law. For many Americans, it was a day of celebration as they would finally be able to get the healthcare they needed at a price they could afford. For others it was a day of frustration and confusion, because even from the beginning it was apparent that this plan was not perfect. Over the past six years we have watched the success and failures of the bill as it was slowly put into action. In that time more than 20 million people have gained health insurance.
My friend sat dutifully by my side in the squeaky plastic chairs of the emergency department waiting room. She tried her best to subtly come up with conversation ideas to keep me talking; our misguided belief in the old wives’ tale about keeping a person with a concussion awake showed how much more we had to learn.
A digital illustration by medical student David Yu.
Debate about some of the most pressing issues facing our country were lost in the horse race of the 2016 presidential campaign. Among those issues was healthcare. While millions of Americans received health coverage under the Affordable Care Act, an estimated 30 million remain uninsured and medical bills continue to be the leading cause of bankruptcy in the United States.
I only realized that I was an optimist on November 9. Crushing disbelief is cliche, and yet — as I walked home, hot-cheeked, through rain and yolk-colored streetlights just after midnight, past a dive bar where neighbors tallied states and feverishly refreshed fivethirtyeight — I felt trampled.
Gun violence as a public health issue is not a new phenomenon. In 2014 alone, there were 81,034 injuries and 33,599 deaths due to gun violence in the United States,which equate to 222 Americans injured, and 92 killed, by firearms every day.
It’s been a hard week. Hard, of course, because this election has caused an unprecedented wave of fear across our nation. Hard because those whose lives have been invalidated by our newest president elect are already exhausted by the daily struggle of living in a hostile country. And — not to be discounted — hard because bad days in medical school seem to hunt in packs and pounce all at once.