Health Care Policy | 2016 Campaign Issues

Health Care Policy | 2016 Campaign Issues

The political talking points regarding Health Care policy throughout the entire election cycle have all revolved around one thing: The Affordable Care Act. Also known as Obamacare, the ACA was arguably the most influential piece of legislation advocated for and conceived by the Obama Administration during the first term of Obama’s presidency.

Trump vs Clinton on the ACA

The ACA, in simplest terms, is a law passed by Congress that aims to make health insurance more accessible and affordable for Americans, especially the poor. Clinton and Trump are diametrically opposed to each other on this issue. Clinton says that she wants to “build on the progress we’ve made” (in reference to the ACA) and that “affordable health care is a basic human right”. She advocates for further expansion of the Affordable Care Actand passing reforms that will lower the cost of deductibles and copays.

Both believe healthcare reform is needed

Like Clinton, Trump also believes that the country is in need of Healthcare reform. However, Trump is vehemently opposed to the Affordable Care Act. On his campaign website, Trump says that on his first day as President of the United States, he will call on Congress to immediately repeal the ACA. He argues we should instead pass a series of reforms like permitting the sale of health insurance across state lines, allowing individuals to deduct premium payments from personal tax returns, and instituting a Health Savings Account system that individuals and families could make tax-free contributions to.

Clinton vs Trump on healthcare for families

On more nuanced issues, Clinton believes that affordable health care should be expanded to all families, regardless of their immigration status. Trump counters that we should enforce the existing immigration laws and therefore not have to pay for the health care costs of illegal immigrants.

Trump’s plan to help working families afford the costs of childcare is to allow “parents to fully deduct the average cost of child care spending from their taxes”. Hillary’s plan is to, among other things, guarantee 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave to care for a newborn child, or a sick family member.

Prescription medication policies

Clinton and Trump have also laid out plans to reduce the cost of prescription medication in the United States. Hillary looks to fight direct-to-consumer marketing that pharmaceutical companies allocate large sums of money to. She also wants to increase competition among pharmaceutical companies by allowing Medicare to negotiate with drug companies. Trump’s plan is to allow international pharmaceutical companies to sell their drugs in the US in order to increase competition and incentivize competitive pricing.


Photo (crop): Trump Clinton by Furfur is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0


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