Health Care Exchanges Go Online October 1 - New York News

Health Care Exchanges Go Online October 1

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© flickr/401(K)2013 © flickr/401(K)2013

The next phase of the Affordable Care Act kicks in this fall, bringing big changes to the nation's health care system. Beginning on October 1, 2013 new, federally-mandated health insurance exchange. Covered California here in this state – go online, offering one-stop shopping for individuals and small businesses looking for coverage. If you're not covered by your company's insurance plan, and you don't have adequate private insurance, you need to sign up in 2014. If you don't, you might have to pay a fine when you file your 2014 federal tax forms.

There's a lot to know about the health insurance law change. Many local cities and organizations are offering workshops to help make sense of the plan and the insurance marketplaces. Call your local politicians and Congressmen to see what is set up in your area. In the meantime, here are some key points and resources to help get you started.

Affordable Care Act

  • Law requires that most adults have health insurance beginning in 2014, or pay a fine when they file their 2014 income taxes
  • Covered California is the state-created Health Insurance Exchange, or marketplace, for California residents
  • Open enrollment in the Health Insurance Exchanges runs from October 2013 through March 2014
  • Premium subsidies are available for those with limited incomes who purchase health insurance through a Marketplace
  • More people who have a limited income are able to apply for Medicaid
  • Insurance companies can't put annual dollar limits on health coverage
  • Insurance companies can no longer deny anyone health coverage because of a pre-existing condition
  • You can buy health insurance even if you're already sick, paying the same price as a healthy person who is the same age

Covered California

  • California's Health Insurance Marketplace, a one-stop shop where people can compare health insurance plans and but the plan that works best for them, their family and their budget
  • Provides financial assistance to help individuals and small businesses pay for health insurance
  • Those who already have affordable coverage don't have to act, unless they lose their coverage from loss of job

Resources:

Department of Health and Human Services: https://www.healthcare.gov

Covered California: http://www.coveredca.com

 

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