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Health Insurance History
Stive S.

A brief history of health insurance coverage reveals that in the aftermath of World War II, the US government sought to provide maximum benefits to the populations in her efforts to reduce the burden otherwise incurred on rise in wages. This policy continued for a number of years, until the introduction of relevant laws in 1950 to provide Medicare for the needy populations of the state.


This was also the first time that the government participated in any form of financing health care on behalf of the populations, and this was accomplished through direct payment to the various health care providers including doctors, physicians and hospitals.


The US government also introduced the famous "Medical Assistance to the Aged" legislation in the decade of 1960s, opening doors of medical assistance and other health care services to the elderly and poor populations though putting restrictions on the extent of medical expenses.


This was followed by the passage of legislation for the establishment of 'Medicare and Medicaid Programs' in 1965 making a part of the Social Security Act. Responsibilities of these programs was entrusted to the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, all of who are presently covered under a single department of Health and Human Services.


The Medicare program was however run by the Social Security Administration, while the Medicaid program was run by the Social and Rehabilitation Service. Both these areas were then transferred to the newly formed Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) as of year 1977, and renamed again as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).


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