Vancouver Home Health Care Agency

Affordable Care Act

Overview of ACA

The ACA, or Affordable Care Act, is also known as Obamacare, which was passed into law in 2010. It stated that every person needed to have healthcare by November 15, 2014, or suffer penalties. While it sounds simple, it was complicated in the beginning, and it took months for individuals to understand the act as a whole. However, individuals were able to purchase insurance from a marketplace, and even those without a workplace could purchase health insurance.

Stated simply, the ACA is a law set in place to make sure every American can have access to affordable health care insurance. Customers are offered discounts in the form of tax credits on any government sponsored plans, and Medicaid was expanded to include a larger number of people who could not otherwise afford insurance.

Insurance companies also faced some rule changes. Past policies allowed insurance companies to turn down a potential customer for preexisting conditions. However, insurance companies can no longer turn away customers. The hope is to contain costs from insurance companies rejecting customers or raising rates due to preexisting conditions.

Some households receive tax credits for having health insurance, but only if the household income is between one an four times the Federal Poverty Level. Households are allowed to apply the credits toward discounts on the insurance premium or claim the credits on the end-of-year taxes.

Plan Tiers

Plans are divided into tiers, which are Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. The biggest difference between the levels is the price paid by the purchaser and the cost-sharing percentages. The Bronze plans cost the least, but will only help with 60% of the medical bills. Platinum plans cover 90%, but cost the most. Individuals must choose the plan that most closely meets medical needs.

Penalizations

By law, every American who can afford health insurance must have it. Anyone who does not meet the income guidelines must be on Medicare or Medicaid. Any individual without insurance will receive a penalty, implemented on the tax return. This means that not having health insurance will not affect individuals now, but will affect pockets at the end of the fiscal year.

Any senior on Medicare does not have to worry over the ACA. The insurance coverage should not change and the senior’s coverage should not be interrupted.

The Vancouver Home Health Care Agency is happy to answer any further questions regarding the ACA, as we understand it can be confusing to navigate this information.
At Vancouver Home Health Care Agency, Caring and Compassion is our business.

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