JUST THE FACTS: THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT

Jun 30th, 2012 | By Sharon Shaw Elrod MSW EdD | Category: Lifestyle, Health & Fitness

Let’s Stick With the Facts, Please

Senior Citizen Journal has been supportive of the Affordable Care Act since its inception. In the wealthiest nation on earth, every citizen should have access to healthcare.  In order for the private insurance system to work, everyone has to participate–thus the ‘individual mandate’.  It just makes good sense socially and morally.

As one might expect in an election year, there are a lot of distortions being thrown around so, once again, SCJ will put forth its best effort to state the facts about the ACA.

  • If you have a private or employer-based insurance plan, you can keep it.  And as long as you pay your premiums, the insurance company cannot drop your coverage if you become sick or disabled.  They cannot put lifetime dollar limits on your health coverage.  They must cover preventive health care (lowers healthcare costs overall) without charging you for it.
  • For the millions of Americans who are uninsured or have a preexisting condition, you cannot be denied coverage. This includes children who have preexisting conditions.  Adult children up to age 26 can be covered under their parent’s health insurance.
  • The new ‘exchanges’ that each state will establish will provide better insurance access and more options to people who are self-employed or have small businesses and any who have been denied coverage or have been unable to find coverage they could afford.
  • If you have Medicare, your annual wellness exams and other preventive/screening services are provided without charging you for it. Seniors have already begun to take advantage of this change in their healthcare coverage, which began in 2011.
  • Most seniors know what the doughnut hole is; many of us have already experienced the out-of-pocket cost of landing in the hole.  Now with our prescription drug coverage plan (Medicare Part D), we receive discounts on our prescriptions when we land in the hole.  The discounts increase each year until 2020, when the doughnut hole disappears.
  • The law also creates new resources to fight waste, fraud and abuse in the Medicare program and adds about 10 years to the solvency of Medicare.


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