Affordable Care Act – The Basics

Whether watching the news, listening to the radio or scanning the Web, it is likely you have heard much about the Affordable Care Act. For some people, all this information is confusing. Here are a few basics:

The Affordable Care Act requires individuals to have health insurance coverage by 2014.

If you already have health insurance, you don’t need to take action. If you wish to explore other insurance carriers, you can through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Depending on your income, you may qualify for lower deductibles, copayments, and more.

If you are currently covered by Medicaid, your benefits have expanded. Click here to learn more about how the Health Insurance Marketplace impacts your coverage.

If you do not currently have health insurance, visit the Health Insurance Marketplace to enroll. You can also find out if you qualify for other programs like Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program, and more.

Choosing a plan
Through the Health Insurance Marketplace there are four categories of plans to choose from —bronze, silver, gold and platinum. Bronze offers the lowest monthly premium, then increases with silver, then gold and platinum with the highest premium. One tip to keep in mind when choosing your plan is that typically the higher the premium (the amount you pay monthly) the lower your cost will be when you visit a doctor. Conversely, the lower your premium the more your cost will be when you visit a doctor.  If you visit the doctor often or fill prescriptions regularly, you may want to choose a plan with a higher premium.

Take action now
If you don’t have health insurance in 2014, you’ll pay a penalty of $95 per adult, $47.50 per child, or one percent of your income (whichever is higher). People without insurance will also be responsible for paying the entire cost of their medical bills. Click here to learn more.

For more information about the Health Insurance Marketplace, call 1-800-318-2596 or visit healthcare.gov.

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