After the Supreme Court voted five to four to uphold the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the eye care community immediately voiced its responses. The big unknown for optometry is whether (or to what extent) the profession will be included in state health insurance exchanges.
The American Optometric Association stated that it “anticipates that federal and state-level agencies will now increase efforts to shape state-based health insurance exchanges and implement further provisions of the sweeping new law, including the AOA-backed Harkin Amendment, Stabenow Amendment and pediatric vision care essential benefit.”
The Supreme Court decision is but one speed bump in this legislation’s ongoing journey. The AOA also stated, “as key health reform decisions are made in the nation’s capital and in statehouses across the country in the coming weeks and months, the AOA will continue working to advance pro-access, pro-patient solutions aimed at ensuring that doctors of optometry and their patients are treated fairly under health reform and that policymakers and others fully understand the central role that optometrists play in enhanced care delivery and improved health outcomes.”
David W. Parke II, M.D., CEO of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, stated in part, “The Supreme Court’s ruling that the health care law is constitutional is just one chapter in a book that is still being authored. The outcome of the November elections will be another important chapter.”