Greg Friese, the Editor-In-Chief of EMS1.com recently analyzed what the Trump presidency and a continuing Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate will mean for the EMS community. He outlined several key policy areas that may affect the EMS profession in the coming years.
- Affordable Care Act may be repealed. The repeal of the Affordable Care Act has been one of President-Elect Trump’s top campaign promises and is likely to be at the top of his agenda in early 2017. The undoing of Obamacare will result in a period of uncertainty for the EMS community, including the number of people that will be impacted by changes in their health insurance and coverage, particularly as it regards emergency transport coverage. The Affordable Care Act had encouraged the development of community paramedicine and mobile integrated health care programs. The future of these programs to help reduce readmissions or provide out-of-hospital monitoring of chronic care is in flux, and payment for such services will not be resolved in the near future.
- There will be a reduction in regulations. Another top promise of the Trump campaign has been the rollback of regulations with the goal to help reduce the burden on the small business community and other industries, and to stimulate the economy. The EMS community may be impacted indirectly by increased injuries if the new administration eases up on consumer protections impacting automobile design for passenger safety, or flame-resistant materials in clothing. There may be some regulatory changes that make it easier for ambulance companies to transport patients over state lines, or enable procurement of equipment or lower operating costs if employer-paid tax rates are reduced.
- Opioid overdose epidemic to be addressed. The Trump campaign made vague promises to address the opioid epidemic, which is the leading cause of accidental death in the United States. Trump’s leadership on this issue to help facilitate federal, state and local solutions to address causes of addiction and to limit accessibility to opioids will have an impact on the volume of calls received by EMS agencies for opioid overdoses.
- Dealing with terrorism and the nation’s preparedness is a priority. Donald Trump promised the nation that he would make it a priority to defeat international terrorists, and to make sure the nation is prepared in the event of a domestic terrorist attack. The EMS community is in the front lines to deal with the top threats to our nation’s citizens, and will benefit from additional funding and training to assure the community’s safety.
Source: EMS1.com, “What a President Trump means for EMS,” by Greg Friese, Editor-in-Chief, November 9, 2016
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