10 Things you Must Know about Healthcare Reform


The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is also known as “Obamacare”. President Barack Obama signed this into law on March 30, 2010. This bill has brought sweeping changes to the healthcare landscape.

The following is the information you need to know about healthcare reform.

1.      Adult Children Receive Coverage Until Age 26

According to PPACA, plans should provide coverage for dependent children up to the age of 26. The cover value is not required to be included to the income of the dependent or participant. This rule applies to dependents who live away from their parents, or are married.

2.      Self-Employed to Lose Current Coverage

There are certain insurance companies that provide insurance policies to the self-employed. According to PPACA, these members must be notified about their policies being discontinued.

3.      Bare-Bones Coverage to Disappear

Small business owners cannot avail limited insurance coverage according to the healthcare reforms. Doing so would result in the business owners paying a higher premium to avail the insurance policy.

4.      Tax Credits for Small Businesses Gets Larger

Business with at least 25 full-time equivalent employees would get a tax credit of up to 50 percent of their health insurance premium costs in 2014, up from 35 percent this year.

5.      Financial Help Extends to the Middle Class

Financial help will extend to middle class individuals and families through tax credits or subsidies, for those at up to a four times the federal poverty level. The tax credits will be given on a sliding scale, meaning individuals with less income will gain more credit limits.

6.      Insurance Prices May Change

Many may see a drastic change in insurance prices and policies. The premiums or the costs of insurance might go up depending on a number of factors such as taxes, fees and coverage requirements per law.

7.      Milestones to Come Into Act

Next year, Medicaid will be expanded in the states that will allow it. People will be eligible to buy coverage using their income tax credits. Tax credits or subsidies are decided to be reserved for those who are not covered through their employers and are not eligible for Medicaid.

8.      Insurance Coverage is Mandatory

Health insurance is now mandatory in U.S. If any citizen is without coverage, they will need to pay a penalty. The penalty is set to be $95 per adult, or 1 percent of family income, whichever is greater for the first year, and increasing each year thereafter.

9.      Contraception and Other Women’s Health Procedures Required to be covered

As per PPACA, health plans must to cover contraception and certain other preventative services for women at no cost.

10.   No Pre-Existing Condition Exclusion for Those Under 19

Plans may not impose pre-existing condition exclusions for children who are less than 19 years old. However, for plan years beginning in 2014, the carrier cannot impose pre-existing conditions on any plan participant regardless of age.