What Should the United States Health Care Law Be?

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In the United States, certain healthcare regulations have been put into place in an attempt to ensure that citizens receive quality healthcare in a fair manner. There are various healthcare regulations that address all areas of the industry. The following three healthcare regulations are particularly important to healthcare in the United States:

  1. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was enacted in 1996. HIPAA mandates that insurance companies are required to cover pre-existing conditions and also limits the amount of time individuals are required to wait prior to coverage being effective. HIPAA also protects an individual's health information from being disclosed to non-authorized parties without the written consent of the individual. Under HIPAA, healthcare providers can only provide healthcare information to certain parties in order to receive payment for treatment or facilitate a continuum of care for the individual.
  2. The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act was implemented on February 17, 2009, in order to protect sensitive healthcare information as the use of electronic health records has increased. A patient's electronic health records are regularly exchanged between physicians, hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and home health agencies. From 2011 to 2015, healthcare providers received financial incentives for demonstrating the proper use of electronic health records.
  3. The Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor (EMTALA) Act was enacted in 1986 to ensure that all individuals are able to receive emergency medical treatment, regardless of their ability to pay. Hospitals that receive Medicare reimbursements are require to provide patients with certain emergent needs with an emergency medical screening. Furthermore, the hospital must treat the patient until he or she is in a stable condition.
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