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    Trump vs. Hillary: The election's impact on physicians

    Healthcare in the United States is truly at a crossroads with practice overhead costs rising, physician compensation falling and many independent practices pondering their futures amid multiplying mandates.


    Blog: Clinton still has a lot of work to do to unify Democrats


    And physicians are left wondering who is best to lead them forward regarding healthcare in the U.S.: a Washington insider who seeks to build on the existing healthcare framework, or a New York outsider pledging to knock it down at all costs?

    Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledges to advance Obamacare initiatives while also addressing issues such as rising drug prices and healthcare for immigrants. Real estate magnate Donald Trump has focused on easing access to imported medications and selling health insurance plans across state lines. (See sidebar on page 56 indicating the stated healthcare policy positions of both candidates).

    With less than a month to go until Election Day, the candidates are working overtime to convince the American public that they are the best for the job.  But who is best for physicians?

    We sought out the experts to examine four issues important to physicians. Both Trump’s and Clinton’s camps declined requests for interviews to answer our questions directly.


    Fate of the Affordable Care Act


    Much of the broader Clinton health policy hinges on what can be accomplished through modifications to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which can be a boon to physicians.


    Hot topic: Obamacare receives a big, fat 'F' from physicians


    Clinton wants more Americans covered by the ACA. While about 20 million people gained health insurance through the exchanges or Medicaid expansion, approximately 10% of Americans still lack any coverage. A national public option was cut from the original law, but Clinton says she will work with every governor to enact state-based public option insurance plans, an approach that will not require Congressional approval. She wants to hire more patient navigators and conduct more outreach to encourage enrollment.  

    A public option is especially important in areas where the marketplaces are not providing sufficient competition among insurers, leaving people with little choice, according to Judy Feder, Ph.D., professor at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy. “If you have only one insurer, there’s a concern that there is not enough competition to keep premiums affordable. Having a public plan would ensure that there is a viable competitor in every marketplace,” she explains.

    Next: "Not all analysts are pessimistic about the impact of repealing the ACA"


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