Two weeks ago, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the health care law, the Affordable Care Act. The health care law makes significant improvements in health care, now and in the future. It is in effect and is being implemented by HHS. We have planned a series of interactive webinars on the health care law for you, faith and community leaders. The interactive webinars explain the benefits and provisions of the law and how people in your congregation and community can access care. HHS is also hosting Affordable Care Act Implementation Forums in Washington, D.C., Chicago, Denver and Atlanta. More information is available in our Upcoming Events section.
Here are four key ways that the health law can help your congregation or community members NOW:
- Most young adults who can’t get coverage through their jobs can stay on their parents’ insurance plans until age 26;
- Children with pre-existing conditions cannot be discriminated against in receiving insurance coverage (starting in 2014, adults with pre-existing conditions cannot be discriminated against in insurance coverage);
- There is increased access to preventive services: Insurance plans now offer many preventive services without a co-pay or deductible;
- There are no lifetime limits on insurance coverage which means that insurers won’t be able to deny, cap or limit your coverage if you get sick.
For the 30 million Americans who don’t yet have health insurance, starting in 2014 the law will ensure an array of quality, affordable, private health insurance plans to choose from through affordable insurance exchanges. Tax credits will make buying insurance more affordable. States will have the option of expanding their Medicaid program to cover people who have incomes up to 133% of the federal poverty level, approximately $15,000 for an individual and $30,000 for a family of four. Community health centers offer primary care with a sliding payment scale to help those without insurance. Each of these improvements will help fill gaps in our health care system. If you have questions about the health care law, you can always email us at ACA101@hhs.gov.
As always, please feel free to email us at Partnerships@hhs.gov or call us at 202-358-3595 to let us know how we can support your work in congregations and communities.
Alexia Kelley, Director
Center for Faith-Based & Neighborhood Partnerships
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services