The Affordable Care Act is a very complex, multi-dimensional healthcare reform initiative that is here to stay and the facts and myths around this program have been bouncing around for several years now. It is interesting how little the uninsured actually knows about the Affordable Care Act, more popularly known as Obamacare. Given that polling shows the act remains unpopular even as many of its component parts are very popular. So here is a refresher on some of the most significant policies and consequences of the law.
- By the year 2022, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that Obamacare will have extended its coverage to 33 million Americans who would otherwise be uninsured.
- Families that make less than 133% of the poverty line will be covered through Medicaid. Between 133% and 400% of the poverty line, families will receive tax credits on a sliding scale to help pay for private insurance.
- Families that make less than 400% of the poverty line have capped premiums. Between 150% and 200% of the poverty line, for example, families will not have to pay over 6.3% of their income in coverage premiums.
- Once the individual mandate is phased-in, those who can afford coverage but opt to forgo it will have to pay either $695 or 2.5% of the annual income, whichever is greater in penalties.
- In the small business marketplace, those that hired less than 10 employees, with average wages below $25,000 and give insurance for their workers will receive a 50% tax credit on their contribution.
- Insurance companies cannot discriminat based on preexisting conditions. They can evaluate candidates using age, family composition, tobacco use and premium rating for the geographical region.
- Obamacare mandates that insurers spend between 80% and 85% of every premium dollar on medicale care. If insurers exceed this threshold, they need to rebate the excess to their consumers. This year, insurers are expected to get rebates totaling $1.1 billion.
- Recently, health care costs have dramatically decreased. A large part of which is because the recession has cause less people to seek procedures, and a small part is because of less diagnostic tests have been ordered. There is also evidence that the law has accelerated changes in the way the medical systems delivers care.
- The long-term success of Obamacare at controlling costs will likely hinge on its efforts to change the way healthcare is delivered, most of which have gotten very little attention.
Listed above are just some of the most important things you need to know about this law. For more information, contact the best health insurance companies in your area. You can also look for an Obama healthcare expert in Philadelphia to properly orient you of this law.