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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Prevention makes for a healthier society

Many Americans today are not getting the check-ups that they need, and we know that focusing on early detection and prevention saves lives. So the White House, along with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, are making an investment in preventive care.

This week, Michelle Obama, Jill Biden, and Kathleen Sebelius announced new regulations around prevention, which were made available as a result of health reform.

Under the Affordable Care Act, beginning on September 23, 2010, new private insurance plans are required to provide recommended preventive care without charging co-payments, deductibles, and other costs. The new rule covers a broad and deep array of services, but here are some of the highlights:

• Blood pressure screenings

• Diabetes tests

• Cholesterol tests

• Cancer screenings including mammograms and colonoscopies

• Routine vaccinations with grade of "A" or "B" by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force

• Prenatal care

• Well-baby and well-child visits

• Tobacco cessation

• Women’s health screenings

According to a New York Times article, the administration estimates that 41 million people are expected to benefit from the new prevention rules just next year.

Early prevention and screenings are important to ensuring greater health care outcomes in the long run. Focusing on prevention is the first step to creating a healthier society. To find more information on the new preventions regulations, visit HealthCare.gov.