The Affordable Care Act is already helping small business owners with the costs of providing health insurance for their employees, and many Americans now have access to care they didn’t before, including children with pre-exsiting conditions and young adults who can now stay on their parents' plan until age 26. Millions more have access to free preventive services, and seniors are getting help paying for the medications they need.
But, there are provisions in President Obama’s health reform law that don’t take effect until 2014 and will do even more to make health insurance cheaper and easier to obtain for millions of Americans. For example, families who purchase private health insurance through state-based exchanges that come online in 2014 could save up to $2,300 each year on their health care spending.
Exchanges will be a single market where families or individuals can purchase and enroll in an affordable health insurance plan that meets their needs. They’ll be able to compare health plans, get answers to questions about their insurance options, and find out if they are eligible for tax credits for private insurance or health programs like the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
These exchanges will offer a way to get insurance that isn’t provided by—or tied to—an employer, meaning Americans will have the security of knowing they don't have to worry about losing or finding coverage if they're laid off, change jobs, or are self-employed. And, insurers that provide coverage through exchanges won’t be able to deny care to anyone based on a pre-existing condition, or limit the amount of care they’ll cover over the course of year even over a person’s lifetime.
For more information:
- Breaking it down: The health care law and cost control
- MarkCare: How health reform is making health insurance more affordable for small businesses
- StevenCare: How health reform enables Steven, a 23-year-old, two-time cancer survivor, to keep the insurance he needs
- HelenCare: How health reform is giving Helen, a senior from Philadephia, peace of mind and more money in her pocket
- VanessaCare: How health reform is helping Vanessa and her family