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Health Security. November 2016
As US public health faces increasing threats from outbreaks, impending changes to the healthcare landscape in the United States may alter the way that health departments are able to detect and control some of the most common infectious diseases. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) has made significant changes in the way health care is provided in the United States. While many of the clinical, economic, and policy implications of the ACA are well described, there has been limited analysis of changes, if any, in the surveillance and control of infectious diseases of public health importance—such as tuberculosis, sexually transmitted infections, and HIV—that are anticipated or occurring as the ACA is implemented across the United States. To address these questions, we reviewed the literature for evidence of changing trends and conducted 66 semi-structured, not-for-attribution interviews with 82 participants from healthcare systems; academia; federal, state, and local public health agencies; and professional and nongovernmental organizations across the United States. This analysis identifies several ways in which ACA implementation has not fully addressed the public health needs associated with diagnosis, treatment, surveillance, and control of infectious diseases of public health importance.