Original document was submitted as an honors thesis requirement. Copyright is held by the author.

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The purpose of this research paper is to examine the effect of the health reform bill, known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), on total medical expenditures in the United States. Since the PPACA will provide health insurance to an additional 32 million Americans, medical expenditures can be expected to increase since the government will have to insure individuals who presently have no health insurance. This paper will outline the present healthcare system in the United States and explain why there was a growing call for healthcare reform in the country. A regression analysis was performed using data from the 2006 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), a comprehensive survey of over 34 thousand civilian, non-institutionalized United States respondents designed to measure respondents’ medical history and how they utilized medical treatments and care. The result of the regression analysis estimated that medical expenditures can be expected to increase by 7.44%, or roughly $17 billion, after full implementation of the PPACA in 2019.

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