The Center for Disease Control annually issues the National Vital Statistics Report. Within the National Vital Statistics Report, the Center for Disease Control reveals the United States’ age adjusted death rate, life expectancy, and the leading 15 causes of death for each year as well as any supporting data. Analyzing this data as it pertains to the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2015 should reveal the efficacy and impacts of this particular piece of legislation. As costs related to healthcare increase deductibles and premiums, it is fair to examine the data recorded prior to the Affordable Care Act as compared to the data collected thereafter enactment.

The Affordable Care Act was signed into law on March 23rd, 2010 which leads to the CDC’s 2009 Vital Statistic Report being the last report issued prior to the enactment of the new healthcare law known as ObamaCare. The 2009 CDC National Vital Statistics Report will serve as the benchmark for this analysis.

In 2004 the age adjusted death rate was 800.8 deaths per 100,000 people compared to 2009 when the death rate was reported to be 741.1 deaths per 100,000 people (Center for Disease Control, National Vital Statistics Report, 2004, 2009). That is a decrease in the age adjusted death rate of 7.45% over the course of five years.

Now compare that 7.45% reduction to the death rate to the rate of decrease under ObamaCare. The age adjusted death rate was 741.1 deaths per 100,000 people in 2009 compared to 2014 when the death rate was reported to be 724.6 deaths per 100,00 people (Center for Disease Control, National Vital Statistics Report 2009, 2014).  That is a decrease in the age adjusted death rate of 2.2% over the course of five years under the Affordable Care Act. According to CDC reports, it appears ObamaCare accounted for slashing the rate of decrease in the age adjusted death rate by over 5% in a 5-year period which began immediately after its passage.

In comparing the 2004 and 2014 CDC reports to the benchmark of 2009, there seems to be one glaring difference in the causes of death. In 2014 the leading causes of death all remained relatively constant with respect to one; homicide. Homicide was replaced by pneumonitis as the 15th leading cause of death in the United States. Looking back through CDC reports it appears this change took place immediately after the enactment of the Affordable Care Act in 2010.

Pneumonitis, according to the Mayo Clinic, is a term used by doctors to describe the inflammation of lung tissue due to noninfectious irritants. The Mayo Clinic also states various causes of Pneumonitis as drugs (antibiotics, chemotherapy), molds and bacteria, farming, bird handling, hot tubs and humidifiers. Treatment of pneumonitis includes corticosteroids and or oxygen therapy, according to the Mayo Clinic.

The treatment of pneumonitis seems to be proper preventative maintenance which entails going to your doctor when you feel a shortness of breath or chest pains. However, it appears after the enactment of the Affordable Care Act, aka ObamaCare, less people were taking the time to practice preventative maintenance. So much so that pneumonitis became a higher overall possibility of death in the United States than homicide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reference:

Center for Disease Control. (2004). National Vital Statistics Report. Retrieved June & July, 2017, from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr55/nvsr55_19.pdf

Center for Disease Control. (2009). National Vital Statistics Report. Retrieved June & July, 2017, from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr60/nvsr60_03.pdf

Center for Disease Control. (2010). National Vital Statistics Report. Retrieved June & July, 2017, from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr61/nvsr61_04.pdf

Center for Disease Control. (2014). National Vital Statistics Report. Retrieved June & July, 2017, from https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr65/nvsr65_04.pdf

Mayo Clinic. (2017). Mayo Clinic Staff. Pneumonitis. Retrieved June & July, 2017, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pneumonitis/home/ovc-20318160

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