Medical Assistance Programs
Denise M. Birchler
Southern Illinois University
Welfare or Public Aid provides a minimal level of comfort, and social support for all citizens. The Medical Assistance Program is designed to provide Illinois residents access to quality healthcare. To qualify you must meet some financial criteria, residency requirements, and in most cases you must be a citizen. Another qualification requirement is the person has to be either blind, disabled or aged 65 or older, or have children under the age of 19 or be pregnant (“Medical assistance programs”).
The Medical Assistance Program has generated a lot of political sides, and debates on whether the government should maintain spending on programs to help the poor, or take the steps to reduce the government’s spending on their budget deficit. Seven in ten (69%) of people say it is more important to maintain current Social Security, and Medicare benefits than to reduce the deficient, while 59% prioritize keeping the current levels of spending for programs for the poor and needy over deficit reduction (“In deficit debate”, 2013). Two-thirds of Americans say the country has not made any progress in reducing the budget deficit. Usually the public supports spending cuts, and tax increases in order to reduce the federal budget, and most people say the best way to reduce it is to cut some major programs, and have some tax increases. The primary focus should be on spending cuts not on anything else. The feelings on budget cuts and spending cuts are divided among democrats, and republicans.
Welfare in the United States commonly refers to the federal government welfare programs that have been put in place to assist the unemployed or underemployed. Help is stretched out to the poor through a variety of government welfare programs that include Medicaid — the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) — and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (The history of). The history of welfare in the United States started long before the government welfare programs we know of were created. In the early days, the colonies introduced the British Poor Laws. This made a distinction between those who were unable to work due to their age or physical health and those who were able to work, but unemployed (The history of). This group was assisted with cash or alternative forms of help from the government, and later was given to public service employment in workhouses. Before the depression, the United States supported different programs to assist the poor. Programs like the Pension Program that was passed in 1862, which gave aid to Civil War Veterans and their families. After the depression when Franklin D. Roosevelt was president the Social Security Act was enacted in 1935, and amended in 1939. Agencies such as the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Labor, Department of...