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Health care: the next election hurdle

By Victoria Neely Columnist

With the next presidential election only a matter of weeks away, the incumbent President Barack Obama and opposing candidate Governor Mitt Romney are working hard to secure the next seat as president of the United States.

During these trying times, these candidates are faced with a number of complicated issues that are very important to the American public. Foreign policy, immigration, health care, education, jobs, social programs and the economy are only some of the hot topics of debate.

One issue that will have an extreme effect on every American is health care. Both candidates are striving for the same thing: health insurance premiums that are affordable, allowing every single person the access to various health services and the elimination of denial on the basis of preexisting conditions.The question is, what is the best way to attain such lengthy goals? Each candidate offers a possible solution, and it is up to the public to decide which best works for them.

Romney swears that one of his first priorities in office will be spent working toward completely ridding the United States of Obama’s Affordable Care Act.He criticizes this health care bill as a national solution to a state problem, and wants to give states the chance to build their own healthcare standards, and implement their own kinds of healthcare reform.

He wants to open up the health insurance market in order to encourage competition and drive the rising premiums down. Americans will be allowed to purchase health coverage across state lines in order to avoid health insurance monopolies. Obamacare does not recognize that each state is different in many manners that could affect their ability to implement certain health coverage mandates. States differ in percentages of citizens who are uninsured, the vastly different debt levels, and the ability to spend money on health care programs without diminishing other important parts of the state budgets.

“Obamacare” and “Romneycare” have important similarities. They both put an emphasis on allowing people with preexisting conditions to obtain health insurance as well as letting children stay on their parents’ health insurance plans for extended periods of time -- often into their mid-20s.It is a common misconception that the repealment of Obama’s ACA would drastically change the ability of young adults to have health insurance after being kicked off of their parents’ premiums for being too old.

Each candidate has very similar goals, even though certain goals may be emphasized more than others. The American people, young and old, need answers to some very important questions regarding their health coverage, the future of Medicare and Medicaid after health care reform is put in, and so on.

These are very tricky topics that deserve to be delved into with much greater detail, which will hopefully occur in the upcoming presidential debates.

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