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Facts About the Affordable Care Act - Obama's Affordable Healthcare Plan
There is a lot of confusion surrounding the Affordable Care Act, referred by some as Obamacare. It is a very broad set of laws and regulations which aims to make health insurance available for nearly a third of Americans who are not able to get reliable health insurance. Despite concerns that this is just another tax that people will have to pay, the facts about the healthcare plan tell a very different story. What it Means to Consumers In one way or another, the ACA will affect all Americans. This does not mean that all Americans are going to see increased rates or have to pay a new tax, though. What is does mean is that more care will be available at reasonable costs, actually reducing the burden of essential health services.
- People living at or below 133% of the poverty level will be eligible for Medicaid.
- People earning 134% to 400% of the poverty level will be eligible for subsidies to offset the cost of insurance.
- Only those who do not purchase a health insurance plan will be penalized, and that penalty will be used to provide insurance for them and others.
- Insurance companies will be required to spend at least 80% of the premiums they collect on medical care and procedures, whereas before, they could spend your premiums on advertising and administrative costs.
- Insurance companies will not be allowed to deny coverage or drop individuals for preexisting conditions.
- Insurance companies will not be allowed to set annual or lifetime limits on medical procedures.
- Insurance companies will be required to provide free preventive care and screenings.
- Incentives to increase medical care in rural areas.
- Treatment programs to reduce return hospitalization for seniors.
- Insurance exchanges will create "one-stop" access to insurance providers and information regarding them.
- The Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) will be expanded.
- The Community First Choice Option is meant to reduce dependence on nursing and convalescent homes by increasing home healthcare options.
- Medicaid and Medicare programs will be overhauled to increase care and reduce costs for those who are not able to pay.
- Healthcare facilities will be required to transition to electronic or digital billing. This is meant to standardize billing processes and save millions of dollars.