The Policy Process: Evaluation, Analysis, and Revision
The Policy Process: Evaluation, Analysis, and Revision
Healthcare is a vital aspect of public service with a direct impact on the citizenry as well as the economy. Constitutionally, it is the mandate of the federal government to set regulations that help to advance this cause. As such, the procedure for drafting and enacting such legislations is rigorous to ensure the public’s safety is assured. For instance, cost reduction for various drugs is an integral part of this process. As a matter of principle, the federal bureaucracy, Congress, the President, interest groups, state and local governments are involved in all stages. In the evaluation stage, the American Medical Association, with money, proper organization, professional legitimacy, geographical distribution, and unchallenged leadership with assistance from panels/task forces would conduct research on the prevalence of the disease nationally against its cost (Porche, 2012). In most instances, the policies are inclined to lower the cost of buying medicine to benefit more patients. It is also plausible that the frequency of the disease in a person’s lifespan would be evaluated in order to understand the long-term impact of the decision. In fact, the source of the drug as well as its biggest market accompanies such proposals for consideration in order to assess its impact on the economy for recovery mechanisms to be instituted. Special interest groups would mine such data. These agencies, therefore, prepare drafts summarizing the above conditions and their influence on price regulation for onward presentation to relevant authorities.
Task forces provide better judgment of this issue by sidelining political undertones. It is, however, the norm for the government bureaucracy to intervene at this stage in an attempt to derail some aspects of the draft in line with the pressures of the current administration. Partisan political interests from geographical areas with a significant political base for officials would be against such moves and may peddle the increase in unemployment narrative. In contrast, other regions with a high patient rate would lend their support to the decrease in drug prices in order to gain political mileage with their constituents. In some instances, manufacturers too would be available with teams of scientists to explore the viability of adopting such theories with respect to the quality of healthcare in the population over time (Kronenfeld & Kronenfeld, 2004). As deliberations continue, some officials would be more interested in the presence of economic safeguards to sustain such a huge undertaking and the possibility of awarding subsidies to achieve a compromise among the many factions. Congress too would be seized of the matter through the necessary channels hence open debate about such a move in consideration of its intended and unintended consequences.
Reduction of drug prices could as well be adopted as policy due to the government’s desire to solve the chronic healthcare sector problems. In fact, the fact that most citizens lack access to insurance would bolster the bid to formulate such a policy in order to incorporate as many people as possible into the treatment demographic (Patel & Rushefsky, 2015). As such, the reconciliation of such amendments would be lead by the president as the leader of the executive branch but also utilize the legislature since that is where the laws are made. The Department of HEW would be instrumental in pushing for the above issue due to the reduction in workload that such an initiative portends. In these forums, the definitions of drug price regulations would be refined by considering existing anti-trust laws and powers available for making amendments as well as the constitutionality of such actions. Whereas these teams would strive for bipartisanship, the influence of such an issue on Medicaid and Medicare would be jolting thereby forcing them to analyze this carefully. It is, even more, predictable that the varying special interest groups would be keen to claim credit for the outcome hence the insertion of supportive texts would dominate such discussions as a way of achieving the greater possibility of action. As such, the issues would be narrowed down to the agreeable ones and the contentious ones. It is, therefore, plausible that coalition building, especially in Congress, would be swift although the balancing between restraints and benefits would be common. For instance, the bill would have to address the relationship between the government and the private health sector regarding grants and subsidies (Howe, 2013). In this instance, local governments would be left aside, but the involvement of such entities would be guaranteed upon weaving of local governments into programs administered by state institutions whose jurisdiction falls under governors. Rate setting would then be applied in determining the favorable selling price of the said drugs in recognition of national importance as well as sensitivity to local parameters. In fact, selective public participation would be allowed at this point too to incorporate their views in fulfillment of the law.
The Federal Trade Commission would be roped in to verify and
establish whether constitutional requirements have been met in the reduction of drug prices. At this stage, the compromise would be a vital component of the
policy formulation because not all constituencies or special interest groups
can be satisfied with the results. As such, the emphasis
would be laid on the amalgamation of ideas from policy advisers, local and
state officials, Congress committees, the
executive, and parties situated at the point of implementation. Such refining
of policy would be geared towards
cushioning the hardest hit areas against overexploitation because most of the
members of the public are ignorant of the consequences of such legislations
after some time. Fluctuations of the price cap would be common at this stage to
balance budgetary allocations for this policy in service of existent realities within communities. The inclusion of riders to the policy asserting
the need for conducting public awareness campaigns would be applicable here as
well. Benefits expansions, which are an
integral component of healthcare legislation, would thus be illustrated regarding incremental doses or dramatic
fashion. In fact, that would form the main selling point for the drug price
reduction policy upon which Congress
would enact into law. Having emanated from the executive too, ascension into
law would entail the signature of the President,
and immediate responsibilities would filter to the appointed authorities to
begin price reductions in concert with other healthcare stakeholders. It is, however, noteworthy that a grace period
would be provided for making the
transition (Buse, Mays & Walt, 2012). Opposition to the policy would be
predictable hence, the deployment of
countermeasures would be necessary to bolster its implementation. It is possible that lawsuits could be filed
contesting the rationale for the new law,
but adequate safeguards are available to provide justifications due to the
involvement of major players in the industry.
Buse, K., Mays, N., & Walt, G. (2012). Making Health Policy. Maidenhead: Open University Press.
Howe, S. A. (2013). Public Engagement in Healthcare Policy Formulation: Contexts, Content & Identity Construction.
Kronenfeld, J. J., & Kronenfeld, M. R. (2004). Healthcare Reform in America: A Reference Handbook. Santa Barbara, Calif: ABC-CLIO.
Patel, K., & Rushefsky, M. E. (2015). Healthcare Politics and Policy in America.
Porche, D. J. (2012). Health policy: Application for Nurses and other Healthcare Professionals. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.