Healthcare Reform in America
A Reference Handbook, 2nd Edition
by Jennie Jacobs Kronenfeld and Michael Kronenfeld
April 2015, 343pp, 6x9
1 volume, ABC-CLIO

Hardcover: 978-1-61069-965-5
$64, £48, 54€, A92
eBook Available: 978-1-61069-966-2
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

In 2013, the U.S. health care system accounted for 18% of the nation’s total GDP.

This valuable handbook makes the U.S. health care system understandable, reviews the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or "Obamacare," describes past health care reform efforts, and covers the important organizations and people involved in U.S. health care reform.

Why does the United States produce poorer outcomes for Americans in terms of health care than most other developed countries that spend a lower percentage of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on health care? Should health insurance be private or should it be managed by the government? The second edition of Healthcare Reform in America: A Reference Handbook addresses these complex and difficult questions and many more in its thorough treatment of one of the most controversial issues in contemporary American discourse.

The work provides a broad introduction to the history and key issues in the development and reform of the U.S. health care system. It then addresses the recent passage of the Affordable Care Act and the myriad of significant expected changes due to the Act, thereby providing readers with information essential to understanding the current issues regarding health care reform. This work serves as a valuable resource to high school and college students as well as to general readers wanting to learn about the history and current focus of health care reform in the United States.


  • Provides clear, accessible information that enables readers to understand the history and key issues in the development and reform of the U.S. health care system
  • Presents short essays that discuss specific issues from the perspective of the expert contributor
  • Includes an index to assist researchers in finding information and resources on specific topics, a bibliography that lists the sources cited throughout the book and recommended additional reading, and a glossary of health care-specific terms
Jennie Jacobs Kronenfeld, PhD, is professor in sociology, Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics at Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ. In addition to coauthoring the first edition of Healthcare Reform in America she has written and edited more than 40 books and published over 140 journal articles and book chapters. Her main research and publishing focus has been in medical sociology, including issues relating to health policy. Kronenfeld holds a doctorate in sociology from Brown University.

Michael Kronenfeld, MLS, MBA, is university librarian at the A.T. Still University of the Health Sciences in Kirksville, MO, and Mesa, AZ. The coauthor of the first edition of Healthcare Reform in America, he has also published more than 25 articles in peer-reviewed journals. He holds a master of library science degree from the University of Rhode Island and a master's degree in business administration from the University of Alabama in Birmingham.


"The authors, a professor of sociology and a medical librarian, respectively, have created an accessible introduction to a complicated subject that will be appreciated by patrons in public, academic, and health-sciences libraries."—Booklist, July 8, 2015

Contemporary World Issues

This award-winning series offers comprehensive, one-volume reference handbooks on important topics related to health, education, the environment, and social and ethical issues.

24-hour cable news. Millions of internet sites. Information overload. How can we sort through the information? Assess the analyses? Trust the sources?

A world of questions demands a library of answers. Contemporary World Issues covers the controversial topics that students, readers, and citizens want to read about, write about, and know more about.


Subject coverage spans six main categories:

  • Criminal Justice
  • Environment
  • Gender and Ethnicity
  • Politics, Law, and Government
  • Science, Technology, and Medicine
  • Society
Each volume offers a rich array of resources:
  • A background and history essay that provides essential context and grounding for further study
  • A balanced summary of ongoing controversies and proposed solutions that show numerous paths for further research on pressing, contemporary questions
  • A forum of authoritative perspective essays by experts, offering a broad spectrum of arguments on the issues
  • Carefully selected annotated documents, tables, and graphs that support statistical literacy and investigation of primary sources
  • A chronology of events, legislation, and movements that place events in sequence and draw connections between them
  • Annotated lists of print, web, and multimedia resources that power the next steps for in-depth research
  • Profiles of key players and organizations
  • A glossary of key terms
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