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What factors are transforming the health care industry?

The last year was a major one for the health care industry in the United States, especially concerning the Affordable Care Act. President Obama's signature domestic policy achievement survived yet again in front of the Supreme Court, meaning millions of citizens could keep their discounted insurance. But what other factors are helping to completely transform this sector?

There has been a shift recently in the health insurance industry, as it has become more focused on the needs of the consumer. Both public and private exchanges offer a whole range of options for customers, meaning companies now need to focus on quality of coverage and the price tag to get and retain consumers. There is stronger accountability on all sides of the exchanges.

Employer-sponsored plans continue to be one of the most controversial aspects of the Affordable Care Act, especially among Republican leaders in Congress. While the GOP is still trying to repeal Obamacare, the private sector has largely moved on from this aspect of the political fight. Employers are continuing to provide their workers with coverage, pushing for more innovative high-quality and low-quality plans.

"There has been a shift recently in the health insurance industry, as it has become more focused on the needs of the consumer."

The United States health care system is one that is constantly growing and evolving. The entire sector is worth just under $3 trillion, with millions of new Americans purchasing plans bringing in new streams of revenue. In his State of the Union speech from a year ago, President Obama remarked that health care inflation is at its lowest rate in nearly five decades, something that was largely achieved thanks to Obamacare.

Aided by the federal and state incentives offered by the president's health care law, employers and consumers are pushing the market to put a greater emphasis on value and outcomes, rather than simply volume. This has pushed insurers to focus on the health outcomes of patient populations, and medical care providers are changing the way they actually care for their patients. Health care customers are benefiting from these rapidly changing strategies.

Partnerships are also increasingly important in this new health care world. This is a hyper-competitive environment to be involved in, meaning major companies are now combining complementary expertise to fill any individual gaps that might exist. In just the last year alone, 40 percent of Fortune 500 corporations pursued new health care partnerships in the hopes of bringing in new clients.

Whether you choose to go the home health care route or visit a local physician, be sure to check back here again for more health insurance help and information. Contact a member of our team to learn more about available options.

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  1. The more one thinks about how this alternative model of care delivery might work, the more it becomes clear that it will probably not be limited to emerging markets. Instead, such innovative ways of delivering basic care at low cost are likely to be a game changer that will begin to transform health care in developed markets as well.