TN Doctors: Future of Health Care Starts with Wellness

The Tennessee Medical Association recommends the federal government work to improve the existing Affordable Care Act instead of repealing it. (Jason/Flickr)

Repeal or replace the Affordable Care Act.
As discussions about the future of the ACA continue at the national and state levels, the Tennessee Medical Association is weighing in on how to improve the quality of health care.
The TMA has released new recommendations for how its members believe the country should move forward with heath care.
The association’s president, Dr. Keith Anderson, says it starts with a focus on wellness.
“Wellness is the whole idea of reducing health care costs, not paying for wellness and preventative care, probably ultimately costs us money on the back end as well,” he points out.
The TMA recommends the federal government eliminate out-of-pocket charges for preventive care and continue to reduce barriers to patient care.
That includes prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage to people with preexisting conditions, and allowing parents to keep children on their health insurance plans until age 26.
Anderson maintains lawmakers should look to work within the existing structure of the Affordable Care Act, instead of starting from scratch.
“If they do repeal the process, they’re going to have to put something in place pretty quickly,” he stresses. “The first Affordable Care Act was kind of rushed in because of political reasons, and we don’t want to see that happen again.”
The TMA also recommends that the federal government maintain adequate provider networks, scrutinize mergers that create monopolies for health plans, and improve processes for reducing fraud and abuse.