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The impact of the Affordable Care Act on healthcare access and self‐assessed health in the Trump Era

Presidential Agendas

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Presidential Agendas

When the presidents come into office several health issues are a priority to them. Likewise, when deciding on the topic of discussion many issues were considered. However, the selected topic is on mental health which has been an issue of concern and has been regarded as a priority health issue among presidents. Mental health is a concern that is attributed to many other factors, which include health factors like the coronavirus pandemic, and economic, social, and contextual factors. There have been significant milestones in mental health treatment among different administrations.

One of the significant progress made in mental health was made during the reign of President Obama. During his reign, Obama expanded mental health care by introducing health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. The ACA was responsible for eliminating the discrimination that existed when offering care to patients with mental health and substance abuse problems. Additionally, the president embarked on building health and behavioral care centers by investing millions of dollars from ACA (National Archives n.d). The services emphasized the importance of promoting mental health access among the police and other personnel involved in the protection of the citizens and their families.

President Trump was not left behind in making positive changes in the provision of mental health care among the citizens. However, Trump’s strategy was marred with controversy regarding the eradication of ACA and Medicaid, which reduced the insurance coverage among those who used that program to access mental health services (Courtemanche et al., 2020). This means such strategies hurt low-income earners by denying them to access crucial mental health services. However, the president further implemented an executive order that saw increased access to mental health services among those with the condition, especially during the pandemic. Such services were aimed at prevention of related suicide, reduction of substance use, and improvement of overall mental health. However, the adoption of COVID-19 management measures such as lockdowns, unemployment, and isolation of people from others increased stress and mental health instances among the people.

These two presidents had excellent strategies for addressing the mental health menace that affected the American population. These strategies have been needed for a long time though they have not been put into practice until recently. However, I would focus on improving mental health training among caregivers as a strategy for ensuring everyone has access to mental health services including healthcare providers. It is prudent to ensure even healthcare providers have access to care because they equally share the experiences of dealing with hopeless patients that could potentially affect their emotional and psychological well-being. Availing such services could help caregivers deal with related trauma whenever it occurs.

References

Courtemanche, C., Marton, J., Ukert, B., Yelowitz, A., & Zapata, D. (2020). The impact of the Affordable Care Act on healthcare access and self‐assessed health in the Trump Era (2017‐2018). Health services research55, 841-850.

National Archives. Addressing Mental Health: Progress in Research, Prevention, Coverage, Recovery and Quality. https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/sites/default/files/docs/mental_health_report_final.pdf