Understanding the Affordable Care Act
We understand that you may have many questions about the Affordable Care Act but we are here to help guide you through it. Here is a quick explanation of how the Affordable Care Act may affect you and your family...
Individuals and Families may be impacted by the Affordable Care Act. Starting on January 1, 2014 all individuals, including children, are required to have health insurance or they will have to pay a tax penalty on their individual income tax return. If you already have insurance through your employer, or are part of a governmental insurance plan such Medicare, Medicaid, TRICARE, CHIP, or other qualifying plans, you are already covered by insurance and will not have to pay a tax penalty. There are also certain exemptions and exclusions for people that truly cannot afford to pay for health insurance.
Obamacare & You: If You Are A Woman
As a woman, it is especially important for you to understand how the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will change healthcare in 2014. Your health care needs differ from men’s and you are often the main healthcare decision maker for your family. Obamacare broadens the range of many services that are important to women that health plans now must cover, some without any co-pay. In addition, it expands access to coverage through Medicaid and the new state health marketplaces.
Obamacare & You: If You Have Medicare
If you have Medicare, you will not have to make any changes to your health insurance coverage as a result of Obamacare. You can continue to rely on Medicare to help pay your hospital, physician and other medical expenses.
You will still have the option to choose between traditional Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan (such as a Medicare HMO) offered in your area, and among Medicare prescription drug plans. If you are on Medicare, and low income, you may also qualify for extra help with premiums and cost sharing. The law did not change these options. For more information about your Medicare coverage options, you can visit www.medicare.gov or call the 1-800-MEDICARE help line.
Obamacare and You: If You Have Job-Based Coverage
If you are now covered by job-based health benefits through your (or a family member’s) employer, then you likely can keep that coverage and will not have to make any changes. In most cases, your employer coverage will satisfy the law’s requirement that you obtain insurance.
Obamacare & You: If You Buy Coverage in the Individual
If you buy your health plan on your own now (rather than getting covered through an employer), you will have new options for getting your coverage, but the law requires you to stay covered or be penalized.
Obamacare & You: If You Have a Pre-Existing Condition
If you or someone in your family has a pre-existing health condition – such as heart disease, asthma, or even a pregnancy – you will find it much easier to obtain coverage or change plans starting in 2014. Obamacare bars insurers from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, or physical or mental illnesses or conditions that existed before coverage began. Insurers also can no longer refuse to pay for otherwise-covered medical care and services due to a pre-existing condition or charge you more because of a pre-existing condition in the family.
Obamacare & You: If You Are Low-Income and May Qualify for Medicaid
Obamacare creates several new ways to get health coverage. You can learn about your options by filling out a single application. It will tell you whether you qualify for free or low-cost insurance through the Medicaid program or through the new health insurance marketplaces that are being established in every state. You should apply for coverage even if you have been unable to get it in the past from Medicaid or private insurance companies. These are new options under the law.
Obamacare & You: If You Are Uninsured