Legislative sessions during an election year are historically shorter, more budget-oriented and less controversial than other years. But as the Obama administration enters its final year, the Affordable Care Act and the tools it provides for increasing health coverage are on the agenda as state lawmakers return to the capitol this month.
Under the Affordable Care Act, no American can be denied coverage, charged a higher monthly premium, or sold a policy that excludes coverage of important health services just because he or she has a pre-existing condition. This is called pre-existing condition discrimination, and without the provisions in the Affordable Care Act that prohibit this, a lot of Americans would be affected.
This blog was originally posted on HuffingtonPost.com
Health care costs have risen sharply over the years, and a greater share of the costs has been shifted to the consumer in the form of rising deductibles and higher copayments and co-insurance. To help consumers with these costs, the Affordable Care Act caps how much money insured people will have to spend out of their own pockets for health care services that are covered in the new law’s essential benefits package.
This week, the Kaiser Family Foundation released a new state-by-state analysis showing that the federal government will assume all but a very small percentage of the cost to expand Medicaid, dramatically reducing the number of uninsured Americans at a bare minimal cost to the states.