Skip to content Skip to navigation

Affordable Care Act Celebrates Second Birthday

March 23, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
| Reprints

Today is the two-year anniversary of the enactment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA is a major piece of healthcare legislation, affecting nearly every American, including those in the health IT sector. CIOs, CMIOs and other tech leaders in hospitals have implemented health IT systems for the purpose of completing many of the mandatory and voluntary programs within the ACA, this includes the preventable readmissions program, the value-based purchasing program, hospital acquired conditions program, and the accountable care organization shared savings program, among others.

The ACA is well known for its goal of expanding insurance to 30 million in Americans within the decade and its overall overhaul of the health insurance system in the U.S. Of its many goals to change the health insurance industry, the ACA is attempting to prevent health insurance companies from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions.   

“Today, two years after we passed health care reform, more young adults have insurance, more seniors are saving money on their prescription drugs, and more Americans can rest easy knowing they won’t be dropped from their insurance plans if they get sick,” President Obama said in a statement.  “The law has made a difference for millions of Americans, and over time, it will help give even more working and middle-class families the security they deserve.”

The legislation has its fair share of opponents and may not see its third birthday. This year’s elections, specifically the presidential election, could play a role in its future. A loss by President Barack Obama to a republican candidate might signify the ACA’s end. GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney has made plans to repeal the legislation if he gets elected by giving a waiver to all 50 states to discontinue the president’s plan. In addition, the ACA’s constitutionality will be up for debate in the Supreme Court next week, where the court could strike it down. 



Report: The Business of Cybercrime in Healthcare is Growing

While stolen financial data still has a higher market value than stolen medical records, as financial data can be monetized faster, there are indications that there is ongoing development of a market for stolen medical data, according to an Intel Security McAfee Labs report.

Phishing Attack at Baystate Health Potentially Exposes Data of 13K Patients

A phishing scam at Baystate Health in Springfield, Mass. has potentially exposed the personal data of 13,000 patients, according to a privacy statement from the patient care organization and a report from MassLive.

New Use Cases Driving Growth in Health Data Exchange through Direct

In an update, DirectTrust reported significant growth in Direct exchange of health information and the number of trusted Direct addressed enabled to share personal health information (PHI) in the third quarter of 2016.

Insurers to CBO: Consider Private Insurers’ Data in Evaluations of Telemedicine

Eleven private insurers, including Aetna, Humana and Anthem, are urging the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to consider the experience of commercial insurers when evaluating the impact of telemedicine coverage in Medicare.

AHRQ Developing New Patient Safety Surveillance Tool

With the aim of improving patient safety monitoring, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is currently developing and testing an improved patient safety surveillance system.

Gates Foundation Awards $210M to UW's Population Health Initiative

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is awarding $210 million to Seattle-based University of Washington’s Population Health Initiative, with the funds going toward the construction of a new building to serve as the initiative’s hub.