Thursday, November 4, 2010

How Health Care Reform Helps Pennsylvanians

While some are calling for the repeal of health care reform, it is important to look at what is really in the law and how it will impact Americans. Below is some information provided by Families USA that shows just some of the ways reform helps Pennsylvanians – and what would go away if repealed:

Helps Individuals Afford Coverage
  • Uninsured Pennsylvanians will be able to gain coverage through a competitive marketplace called an “exchange.” By forcing insurance companies to compete, exchanges will drive down costs, guarantee choice, and put consumers in control.
  • People with moderate incomes (for example, a family of four making up to $88,000) will get help paying their premiums. 
  • Health reform will set limits on how much families will have to spend on health care out of their own pockets (on copayments, deductibles, etc.).
Regulates Insurance Companies
  • Insurers will no longer be able to deny coverage because of a pre-existing condition or drop coverage when individuals get sick. 
  • Insurers will no longer be able to charge higher premiums based on gender or health status.
  • Insurers will be required to spend more money from premiums on actual medical care and quality measures.
  • Insurers will no longer be able to put yearly or lifetime limits on how much they will pay for care.
Expands Coverage, Saves Lives
  • Young adults can stay on their parents’ health plans up to the age of 26.
  • Health reform will save lives. Without reform, an estimated 7,500 Pennsylvanians will die prematurely due to a lack of health coverage over the next decade.
  • 829,000 uninsured Pennsylvanians will gain insurance coverage by 2019.
The Affordable Care Act will do all of this while reducing the federal deficit by $138 billion in the next 10 years and will save $1.2 trillion more in the following two decades. For more information on how this is accomplished see a video produced by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

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