If Hillary Clinton is elected president, her first priority onhealth care is clear: defend the Patient Protection and Affordable CareAct.

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"I am not going to let them rip away the progress we made, I amnot going to let them tear up that law, kick 16 million people offhealth coverage and force this country to start the health caredebate all over again," said the former First Lady and Secretary ofState recently.

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Indeed, during her unsuccessful campaign for president in 2008,Clinton was defending a key aspect of the current PPACA that eventhen-Sen. Barack Obama did not support at the time: the individualmandate.

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But in the midst of a spirited primary challenge on the leftfrom Sen. Bernie Sanders, Clinton is under pressure to explain tothe party base how she will go beyond PPACA to improve access tohealth care.

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“My attitude is, look, we’ve got some good things done, let’spreserve what works and fix what doesn’t,” Clinton said last week,according to the New York Times.

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Read: Bigpharma slams Clinton prescription drug strategy

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Sanders and many in the party base believe PPACA remainsfundamentally flawed because it operates within a for-profitinsurance system. Many were furious that PPACA did not include apublic option or that Democrats did not try to scrap the entiresystem in favor of the single-payer model of health care favored bymost other western countries.

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In light of this complicated political dynamic, Clinton releaseda plan to bring down costs on Tuesday. Among other things, shecalled for rules that cap the monthly amount consumers can payout-of-pocket on drugs and called for allowing the federalgovernment to negotiate directly with pharmaceutical companies overthe price of Medicare drugs.

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Clinton also wants to allow Americans to order medicine fromother countries, where drugs are often cheaper and to imposerestrictions on profits that pharmaceuticals reap from medicationsthat were developed with assistance from federal subsidies.

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While health care is playing nowhere near as prominent a role inthe GOP presidential primary as it has in years past, all of theRepublicans who aspire to occupy the White House have been clear intheir opposition to Obamacare.

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In many instances, however, it remains largely unclear whatalternatives they are proposing. More importantly, when they dopropose alternatives, it is unclear whether they offer a realisticopportunity to keep the uninsured rate as low as ithas become since the Affordable Care Act was put inplace.

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