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150 Years of ObamaCare

, 320 pages

32 line drawings

April 2018



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Usually ships 2-3 business days after receipt of order.

150 Years of ObamaCare



In this groundbreaking book, health-care attorney Daniel E. Dawes explores the secret backstory of the Affordable Care Act, shedding light on the creation and implementation of the greatest and most sweeping equalizer in the history of American health care. An eye-opening and authoritative narrative written from an insider’s perspective, 150 Years of ObamaCare debunks contemporary understandings of health reform. It also provides a comprehensive and unprecedented review of the health equity movement and the little-known leadership efforts that were crucial to passing public policies and laws reforming mental health, minority health, and universal health.

An instrumental player in a large coalition of organizations that helped shape ObamaCare, Dawes tells the story of the Affordable Care Act with urgency and intimate detail. He reveals what went on behind the scenes by including copies of letters and e-mails written by the people and groups who worked to craft and pass the law. Dawes explains the law through a health equity lens, focusing on what it is meant to do and how it affects various groups. Ultimately, he argues that ObamaCare is much more comprehensive in the context of previous reform efforts than is typically understood.

In an increasingly polarized political environment, health reform has been caught in the cross fire of the partisan struggle, making it difficult to separate fact from fiction. Offering unparalleled and complete insight into the efforts by the Obama administration, Congress, and external stakeholders, 150 Years of ObamaCare illuminates one of the most challenging legislative feats in the history of the United States.

Attorney Daniel E. Dawes is a senior advisor on health policy to the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at Morehouse School of Medicine and an associate professor of complex health systems at Nova Southeastern University. The cofounder of the Health Equity Leadership and Exchange Network (HELEN), he is a nationally recognized leader in the health equity movement who has been at the forefront of major federal health policy negotiations in the United States.

"An informative and enticing book... Dawes combines his on-the-ground perspective with that of a longtime scholar and advocate for the reduction and elimination of health disparities."

"This text is invaluable for its data alone. Dawes provides an informed perspective on U.S. health care, its evolution, and how the ACA ultimately became law; but ObamaCare is also a good information source, a neutral chronicle. I enthusiastically recommend this book to anyone interested in learning more about the act and U.S. health care policy."

"An important book that will come to serve as a key reference work for anyone wishing to understand the process by which the Affordable Care Act came into existence, not to mention the actual contents of the law itself. [Dawes] brings valuable... knowledge of the policy process to a wider audience, and the book will be of interest to scholars and policy analysts across a range of fields."

"This is an important book that will come to serve as a key reference work for anyone wishing to understand the process by which the Affordable Care Act came into existence, not to mention the actual contents of the law itself."

"Putting the struggle to pass and implement the Affordable Care Act into historic perspective is a valuable contribution to understanding how difficult this effort has been and how significant the passage of health reform is for the citizens and the economy of our country. Daniel Dawes brings to life the extraordinary efforts of advocates, lawmakers, and citizens to increase access to quality health care for those who have long been marginalized and excluded. 150 years of Obamacare is an important and comprehensive volume."

"In this groundbreaking work, Dawes cuts through the noise by combining a history of past public policies and the health equity movement in America with his intimate knowledge of the ACA. He puts the law into context and powerfully explains what is at stake in the future for health reform."

"In extending health insurance coverage to millions of people, the Affordable Care Act is a game-changer for those with mental health and substance use disorders. Daniel Dawes tells the story of how the law was developed and passed—and its role in reshaping American health care. An illuminating study for anyone who cares about health equity!"

"150 Years of ObamaCare is a masterful and thought-provoking, must read, exploration of health reform past, present, and future."

"This book tells the little-known and never publicized story about the work of congressional leaders—behind the scenes—to ensure that health equity would be a core goal of this landmark legislation. Daniel Dawes illuminates the nuts-and-bolts processes of getting it done and ensuring that certain communities would not again be left behind or left out!"

"Daniel Dawes provides an impressive, brilliant, evenhanded and deeply convincing narrative on why ObamaCare matters, how it impacts different groups in our society, and what is left to do. This book should be read by everyone interested in health care, politics, health policy, or civil rights."

"150 Years of ObamaCare not only details the history of the incrementalist approach to health reform in this country but also offers a keen perspective on what might lie ahead.... The lessons of 150 Years of Obamacare will help us all better understand future attacks on the ACA and continuing attempts to achieve health equity. In addition to the vast amount of history one can learn by reading 150 Years of ObamaCare, the book provides a bird's-eye view of both the ACA's passage and the political turmoil that has followed. Readers will appreciate Dawes's insightful descriptions of what it was like behind the scenes during the tortuous process of passing the law.... To help cut through that complexity, all readers, law-trained or not, will find useful Dawes's piece-by-piece explanation of the law's major provisions accompanied by concrete examples designed to illustrate their application."

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