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After watching the video “Obama’s Deal,” the other resources below and incorporating what you have read, how would you describe the policymaking process to someone who is not from the U.S. (the concern in this question is “process” and not the particular points of view expressed in the video – or your agreement/disagreement with them). The key point of this question is for you to create an answer that integrates “textbook policy creation” and what you saw in the video. Do not just list the steps in policymaking. But if you do, answer the question "What happens at this step?"
Your reflection should be about 3 double spaced pages. You do not have to respond to anyone but it would be courteous to read the posts of your group members - and if feel you want to respond to someone else, go ahead - I am sure they would appreciate it. [Remember that this is a "writing intensive" course so your comments should reflect "good writing."]
www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/obamasdeal/ Obama’s Deal
The conservative perspective, promoting individual ownership and responsibility in an “ownership society,” leads to policies such as individual rather than governmental or employer-based insurance, insurance with substantial patient cost sharing, and medical or health savings accounts; these contrast dramatically with the liberal social insurance approach. The conservative “ownership society” does not pool health risks but has people paying their own way. Because many people can afford neither health care nor health insurance, conservatives might support subsidized insurance for the poor.
A conservative mantra holds that health care costs are high and rising because people are over insured for many services and that patient cost sharing and free-market competition can solve the problem. Physicians, hospitals, and insurance companies should be allowed the freedom to make their own decisions without being touched by government, conservatives say. Most liberals, in contrast, feel that people are under insured and that governmental regulation is needed to contain costs. Many conservatives see the need for a health care safety net—community health centers and public hospitals—for people without insurance, whereas liberals call for everyone to receive equal treatment through universal health insurance, obviating the need for a separate (and usually unequal) safety net.
Areas of agreement do exist between these largely incompatible approaches. Liberal policy analysts agree that competition among health care providers—if based on quality and access—can be a positive force. Liberals and conservatives desire widespread computerization of health care, and people of both tendencies support efforts to improve the quality of care.
Most leaders of health insurance plans, hospital systems, and physician organizations—although they might personally adhere to conservatism, liberalism, or something in between—act in a pragmatic manner, making decisions that would advance their organizational objectives. It is interesting that based on more than 1,000 interviews with health care leaders in 2002–03, Len Nichols and colleagues found that many are losing faith in market forces and are looking toward government to provide solutions.
Is the red-blue divide so deep and wide that national paralysis will continue to prevent solutions to health care’s problems of access and cost? Is the United States doomed to muddle along for years to come? I am hopeful that current policies—promoting limited insurance products tailored to the majority of the population that is healthy—will be short-lived, as insurance costs skyrocket and health care access plummets for people who are sick and middle class or poor. At that time, the government may finally act on the popular belief that health care should be a right of all people and demand a universal social insurance program that elevates the primacy of “me” into concern for “us.”
[From “Red Versus Blue Health Policy.” Thomas Bodenheimer. The Political Divide in Health Care: A Liberal Perspective. Health Affairs Novemver 2005 vol. 24, no. 6, 1426-1435.]
While "debate" is important in the process, the goal should be to come up with policy that is good for all the citizens.
After watching the video “Obama’s Deal,” the other resources below and incorporating what you have read, how would you describe the policymaking process to someone who is not from the U.S. (the concern in this question is “process” and not the particular points of view expressed in the video – or your agreement/disagreement with them).