The article under analysis is written by Béland et al. (2019) and entitled “Policy feedback and the politics of the Affordable Care Act.” The article was published in the Policy Studies Journal, which addresses diverse public policy issues in 2019. Béland et al. (2019) argue that the Affordable Care Act is characterized by self-reinforcing and self-undermining feedback that has both positive and negative effects on its implementation in terms of conservative restructuring.
The authors state that the ACA failed to gain popular support, so self-reinforcing feedback was weak, while self-undermining feedback was rather influential but insufficient. Béland et al. (2019) mention that self-undermining feedback included a lasting immature period of the act, territorial and institutional fragmentation, and opacity as the benefits of the legislation were not made clear. Ironically, benefits visibility overtime is one of the foundations of self-reinforcing feedback as the favorable outcomes of the law became understood in several years, but Republicans failed to provide a feasible alternative.
The associated economic benefits that were apparent on the state level made a considerable part of the states support the ACA. Béland et al. (2019) argue that self-reinforcing feedback was belated and insufficient to address self-undermining feedback and gain the capacity to be implemented properly.
The authors conclude that the analysis of the self-reinforcement and self-undermining feedback associated with the ACA shows the relevance of both aspects compared to the focus on one type of feedback. Béland et al. (2019) also suggest that feedback is not the only factor affecting the implementation process as policy design and interest group environment are influential as well.
It is necessary to note that the authors of the article under consideration have sufficient knowledge and expertise to analyze the issue, and their conclusions have a high degree of relevance. Daniel Béland “holds the Canada Research Chair in Public Policy at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy,” and the other two researchers are an assistant professor (Philip Rocco) and associate professor (Alex Waddan) in political science and politics (Béland et al., 2019, p. 23). The authors provide a well-organized article with rich and valid arguments that are evidence-based. Each point is considered in detail, and clear conclusions are given at the end.
The authors utilize an effective methodology as they use the framework that has been validated by other researchers who have analyzed policies. The outcomes of the ACA have also been mentioned, and these findings are consistent with the existing research on the matter. For instance, Béland et al. (2019) state that the economic impact has been an influential factor. Hu et al. (2018) also claim that the financial effects of the ACA have been considerable, including the decrease in debt collection.
Nowak et al. (2016) concentrate on people’s financial wellbeing and federal spending claiming that healthcare became more affordable for many families. Importantly, Béland et al. (2019) pay significant attention to the reactions of state governments regarding this aspect as an influential factor affecting feedback. Duggan et al. (2019) also state that states responded differently to the legislation under study. The findings provided by Béland et al. (2019) concerning public support that was mixed are supported by the conclusions Mechanic and Olfson (2016) make.
It is important to add that the utilized evidence is relevant and updated. Béland et al. (2019) trace the feedback towards the ACA from 2010 to these days. The authors refer to diverse sources that are valid and up-to-date, which makes the article relevant. Every point made by the researchers is well-supported and properly explained, which makes the argumentation effective and accurate. Béland et al. (2019) were successful in making their point as they analyzed different aspects of positive and negative feedback and explained the way it affected the implementation of the policy.
The authors also mentioned that other factors also had an impact on the outcomes of the ACA, which shows that they use a comprehensive approach and pay attention to the most influential components. Since the focus of the research was on feedback, these elements are mentioned briefly. The interaction between these aspects can become a matter of further inquiry that will enrich the existing literature.
In conclusion, the article in question provides valuable insights into the effects self-reinforcement and self-undermining feedback have on the ACA. The authors provide accurate data that are supported by other studies, and the influence of feedback is vivid in terms of the effectiveness of the legislation in question. The implementation of the policy in different states and the attitudes of diverse interest groups show the exact relevance of each type of feedback.
The inability of Republicans to repeal the Act and the negative aspects of this legislation lead to its insufficient acceptance and mixed outcomes. The ACA remains one of the most controversial policies that give rise to debates that are deeply rooted in the feedback. The findings of this article can be seen as a framework for the analysis of other policies that have been enacted or those that can be potentially developed.
Béland, D., Rocco, P., & Waddan, A. (2019). Policy feedback and the politics of the Affordable Care Act. Policy Studies Journal, 47(2), 395–422. Web.
Duggan, M., Gupta, A., & Jackson, E. (2019). The impact of the Affordable Care Act: Evidence from California’s hospital sector. National Bureau of Economic Research, 1(1), 1–64. Web.
Hu, L., Kaestner, R., Mazumder, B., Miller, S., & Wong, A. (2018). The effect of the affordable care act Medicaid expansions on financial wellbeing. Journal of Public Economics, 163(1), 99–112. Web.
Mechanic, D., & Olfson, M. (2016). The relevance of the Affordable Care Act for improving mental health care. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 12(2), 515–542. Web.
Nowak, S. A., Saltzman, E., & Cordova, A. (2016). Alternatives to the ACA’s affordability firewall. Rand Health Quarterly, 5(4), 3–16.