Although the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has drawn in some controversial conversations in politics, it has proven to also be showing some benefits.
Since the implementation of the ACA, insurance coverage rates have gone up steeply which could end up paying big dividends. But researchers are now discovering that the ACA is actually helping people to seek preventative care, results that will be published in September in Health Affairs.
During their research they were able to find that people who had gotten insurance were dramatically more likely to also have their chronic conditions diagnosed. But people that didn’t have insurance were more likely to not visit the doctor at all, which means that their diseases would not be diagnosed. In the case of many illnesses, especially chronic diseases, early treatment is vital in preventing complications, and in most cases, death. The early diagnosis of these types of disease also tends to lower the overall cost of treatment, according to Doctors Lounge.
The people that were observed with insurance also tended to have better vital health indicators like blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose. Diabetes and pre-diabetes are preventable situations when the disease or conditions leading to it are found early on.
Researchers made it clear that the argument they were making was focused on increasing insurance rates leading to increased preventative coverage. The ACA would then have to reduce uninsured rates for their argument to work. As of now, the estimated uninsured rate has dropped by 7.9 percent due to the ACA.
The researchers of the study also took into consideration the data from 28,157 people who were aged 20 to 64 with information taken from a survey from 1999 to 2012.
The ACA has attracted critics from both sides, the left and the right. Overall, the program has been well regarded for its igniting efforts to increase preventative care.