Obamacare countdown heats up
There's a lot of confusion around what's going to happen under Obamacare. Where can you go for accurate (and non-partisan) information? Start here.
Yet even after three years of immersing herself in the world of Obamacare, Watts uses cheat sheets to make sure her explanations of the law are accurate. "It's way too complicated for me to remember everything," says Watts, the national health care spokeswoman for Mercer, a consulting firm that advises mostly large employers on their employee benefit needs.
If you do not have a Tracy Watts or her cheat sheets handy, there are still ways to become informed about Obamacare. Many insurance companies and health websites provide information on the law. The Kaiser Family Foundation, which does not sell health insurance or receive compensation for its recommendations, is widely recognized as having the best set of Obamacare tools. Even federal government experts within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommend Kaiser tools. Another reliable source for Obamacare information is the government itself.
Here is a look at some of the most helpful online health care reform resources that consumers should have in their toolboxes:
State health insurance marketplace profiles: Obamacare may be the law of the land, but its provisions are being carried out on the state and local levels. The Kaiser Family Foundation has profiles of the new insurance exchanges that are being set up in each state. Most are being created for the states by the federal government, but a number of states have built their own exchanges. Not all state exchanges will have the same features. If you are shopping for coverage for you and your family, it's important to understand your state's exchange.
State insurance exchange subsidy calculator: One of the most helpful, yet confusing, parts of Obamacare is the complex set of tax credit subsidies for individuals buying insurance through a state exchange. Individuals who are offered group health insurance from their employers may not use the state exchanges for subsidies unless their employer's standard plan fails to cover minimum insurance requirements of the law or their incomes are too small to afford the standard plan. If you are looking for insurance in an exchange, this tool from Kaiser provides an easy way to estimate how much of a subsidy you would qualify for on a state exchange.
Status of state medicaid expansions: Obamacare's goal to secure health insurance for all Americans includes a significant expansion of Medicaid to nearly all citizens who cannot afford private health insurance and are too young to apply for Medicare. Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court said the Affordable Care Act was constitutional but that states, which pay a large portion of Medicaid costs, could not be forced to expand their Medicaid programs. The law promises to pay 100% of added state Medicaid expenses for three years and then to reduce that rate, but it would never fall below a 90% federal share. To date, about half the states have decided to expand their Medicaid programs, and half are not expanding at this time. Click on your state in this Kaiser map to see what's happening where you live.
What's in the Affordable Care Act?
The government's HealthCare.gov website provides an overview of the most important consumer features of the law. It's broken down into topics with links to more detailed explanations, including changes to rules about pre-existing conditions, keeping young adults on their family health policies up to age 26, ending lifetime limits on health insurance payments, preventive health services, access to emergency care services and how to keep using your preferred doctors.
A timeline of key features. Use this HealthCare.gov tool to see a timetable of key features of the law that have been or will be implemented.
More from U.S. News & World Report:
- 9 little known way to pay fewer taxes
- 10 good things about Obamacare
- 12 surprising facts about boomer retirement
1. If unions are exempt....I want NO part of it.
2. If "certain" religions are exempt.........I want NO part of it.
3. If those who authored the plan are exempt..........I want NO part of it.
This plan WREAKS of partisan political gain, vote mongering and govt. control.
If it looks like a duck..............................................................
Are you seeing the comments so far. Don't forget this is on MSN.
How in the world is this horrific crap getting through. We need to GET RID OF OBAMA AND OBAMACARE. Obama doesn't care about YOU.
COUNTDOWN TO DEATH PANELS! HIGHER RATES! SERVICES CUT! LONG LINES AND LONG
WAITS JUST TO SEE A DOCTOR IF THEY ALL DON'T QUIT! TAXES FEES AND FINES! BUT
OBAMA AND ALL HIS FRIENDS AND DEMONCRATS WILL STILL GET CADILLAC SERVICE!
YEAH THAT'S REALLY FAIR TO ALL OF THOSE WHO WORKED HARD TO PAY FOR OUR
INSURANCE AND NOW OBAMA IS GONNA DESTROY HEALTHCARE TO PAY FOR ALL HIS
LAZY KISS **** WELFARE FOODSTAMPING LEFT WING LIBERAL BIG NANNY STATE VOTERS!
**** YOU OBAMA YOUR NOT GETTING A FING PENNY OUT OF ME! I''M GONNA SHOW UP AT
THE EMERGENCY ROOM WITH NO ID SAY I'M AN ILLEGAL AND GET TREATED LIKE ALL
THESE ILLEGALS AND DEMOCRATS HAVE BEEN DOING FOR DECADES! GOOD ONE JAYBEE!
Countdown to Obamacare
10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.........................Houston, we have a disaster
Why is congress going to use Obamacare as a leverage tool to pass a budget so the government dont shut down?? It should have nothing to do with the budget, and be voted down on its own merits
the cost of the subprime crisis was set at 47 trillion.
Barry's SocialistCare is, and has always been, about providing free health care for his leaches, namely blacks, paid for by those that the radical program will hurt the most, people who are not worthless deadbeats and actually pay taxes.
DEATH PANELS ???
That doesn't sound good.
Is that where they judge whether or not to treat you based upon a complex algorithm that balances the cost of treatment with expected years of life remaining to see if it is an acceptable expense or not? And naturally these "calculations" will be based on differences in factors such as age, gender, family history and race.
Barbaric. Reminds me of a scene from the film, "Schindler's List" where the patients were forced to run about a courtyard and judged if they were healthy enough to keep or faced special treatment.
If you are going to need any surgical proceedure over $10k, get it when you're young or you won't be getting it.
February 04, 2011 from latimes.com by Noam N. Levey
Obama administration offers states ideas on how to cut Medicaid.
A letter to governors facing huge budget shortfalls suggests a range of Medicaid cuts,
including removal of some people from the program.
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