And the healthcare discussions continue….

This is the link to the White House Blog; with the official explanation of the Affordable Care Act, known to many as “Obamacare”.  There are specific sections addressing:

The Health Care Law and Seniors

Health Coverage without Lifetime Limits

The Health Care Law and Young Adults

Coverage for Sick Children

Many companies postponed making any changes to their employee health care coverage, waiting for the Supreme Court’s ruling.  Many States postponed the process of creating the mandated healthcare exchanges, where individuals can obtain insurance if not available through an employer. (Mandated coverage is to begin in 2014).  18 months is not a lot of time to get a state program in place in my opinion, but something will be put in place to meet the requirements.  Illinois is one of those States that postponed the creation of a healthcare exchange.

Did you know that with the Affordable Care Act being upheld, there will be new taxes implemented in 2013: increasing employees’ share of the Medicare payroll tax, and another raising taxes on investments?

It is critical that we all become more familiar with all aspects of The Affordable Care Act; not just the parts which routinely appear in the news.  While there is the opportunity for everyone to have health insurance,  there is also a component which will likely lower reimbursement to Medicare providers in the coming years.  Does that mean that fewer providers will choose to be a part of the program, limiting Medicare recipient’s care options?  There is conjecture that some companies might choose to forgo providing health coverage to their employees and pay a penalty, rather than continuing to worry about the continually  increasing medical insurance premiums. Their employees can then obtain insurance through the insurance exchanges in each State. And then there is the ongoing discussion of who will be financially responsible for the Medicaid program in each state; how much will the Federal government contribute to each state’s Medicaid program annually and how will the reimbursement levels be determined?

This Act does not address the increasing costs of providing health care in the United States.   It focuses on providing health care coverage to the majority of eligible individuals in this country, if they choose medical insurance coverage. Do you know what impact the Affordable Care Act will have upon you and your family?

Between now and the November elections I am sure that the debate will continue and more information will become available to all of us. Impress your friends and family with your knowledge on this subject. Choose to be an educated consumer.

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