We're All in This Together
By Jason J. Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD, FAAO
Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you no doubt have heard about issues surrounding health care today, particularly in the United States. Although the term is repeated almost daily in today's news, “Healthcare Reform” has been discussed for many years.
Looking back in time, you could argue that President Lyndon Johnson's enacting of Medicaid and Medicare was the origin of today's modern-day reform in the United States. Other major attempts at reforming health care included 1974's Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), 1985's Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act (COBRA), 1996's Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and 1997's State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Most recently, we saw the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which was enacted in 2010.
In this month's issue of Contact Lens Spectrum, you will note that one of our features is a bit more general compared to our regular contact lens and ocular surface topics. Although our mission is to focus on contact lenses and the ocular surface, we felt that it was important to cover issues surrounding healthcare reform, particularly as these issue will no doubt impact our clinical practices. I am the first to admit that sometimes it's easy to ignore the incessant political discussion about topics such as healthcare reform and to think to yourself that you will worry about it another day. However, if you stop to think about some of the forthcoming mandates and their impact on your daily life, it reminds you how important it is that we all actively engage on these issues now. As always, we hope this content is useful to you in your practices and we look forward to hearing your thoughts.