Baker Scholar Projects

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This paper examined the history, role, and the future of the individual mandate. It also examined problems in the United States’ health care system that the individual mandate intends to address, such as free-riding and adverse selection. Research indicated that the individual mandate was first implemented in Massachusetts under Governor Romney. This research examined Massachusetts’s individual mandate through public opinion polls before and after implementation. These public opinion polls indicated that the individual mandate was popular before and after it was implemented in Massachusetts. Studies also indicated that the individual mandate proved to be very successful. Massachusetts’s individual mandate eliminated both the free-riding problem, and adverse selection. These findings indicate that the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate will have similar success at the federal level.

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