National health care reform is not a modern concept. Rather, it is an idea that finds its roots in models that European countries first used in the late 1800’s and has been a consistent piece of the American political dialogue since the early 1900’s.
Understanding the prior efforts at – and obstacles to – national health care reform therefore is essential to understanding how the Affordable Care Act became law. It also provides an important context that should prove useful when trying to forecast exactly how the Affordable Care Act will shape the future of American society.
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