Providing affordable access to quality health care is a worthy and important goal, but the current path of increased government power over the patient-doctor relationship that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) provides is not an acceptable solution. This federal mandate is a tax in disguise that forces citizens to purchase insurance plans and threatens our small businesses with penalties. The specific requirements in the ACA legislation will inevitably constrain job creation and add another layer of bureaucracy to an already bogged down system. According to the National Federation of Independent Business, this tax could reduce private-sector employment by several hundred thousand jobs over the next decade, more than half of which would come from small businesses, and the impact on the gross domestic product could be as high as $185 billion.
Its implications will limit the amount of choices available on the market and will continue to lead the nation down a path of fiscal unsustainability. Additionally, the plan does little to combat the excessive waste, fraud and abuse currently straining the system. It is simply an unaffordable plan that falls short of the reform we truly need. Real reform must be efficient, effective and patient-centered. A market-based health care system would provide people the opportunity to shop around and force healthcare providers to keep costs down while maintaining quality service.