How Healthcare Reform Affects You

Separating fact from fiction

Can you tell me more about the Health Insurance Exchange?

The exchange would enable individuals and businesses to choose from a variety of standard plans, including a public option, and benefit from the competitive rates given large businesses.

It is one-stop shopping that will enable you and your family to find a plan that is right for you, according to the government.

What are some of the Proposed Consumer Protection Reforms?

These reforms call for increased access to preventive services and screenings. Insurers would be prohibited from refusing coverage based on pre-existing conditions. Basing rates on gender, health status, occupation, or age would be prohibited.

Standard, out-of-pocket spending limits would be imposed to prevent bankruptcy due to medical expenses. There would be streamlining of administrative forms, billing codes, and other processes, and the programs that promote diversity in the healthcare workforce would be expanded.

Who pays for all of this – me, my employer, or the government?

Obama has said that he won’t sign a reform bill that would add to the already staggering deficit. The bill is anticipated to cost $1 trillion over a 10-year period, to be paid for through reduced spending or new taxes.

The government says the majority of the initiatives that would pay for reform will come from cutting waste, fraud, and abuse within existing government health programs; ending big subsidies to insurance companies; and increasing efficiency with such steps as coordinating care and streamlining paperwork. Under the government’s plan, money that is already being spent on healthcare will be re-allocated toward reforms that lower costs and assure quality affordable healthcare.

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