What is Obamacare?

What is Obamacare?

“Obamacare” is a term that generally refers to the Affordable Care Act that was signed into law in 2010. Some people refer to the Affordable Health Care Act as “Obamacare” because it was signed into law by President Barack Obama. The Obama care bill is the first substantial healthcare reform plan since 1965, and it’s aimed at making health care more affordable for American citizens through regulation and federal subsidies.

A Few Key Points of the Obama Care Bill:
The Obamacare act is a 955-page document that establishes a lot of rules and regulations for the insurance industry, and attempts to make sure all Americans can get an affordable healthcare plan. These are a few of the key points from this law:

  • No-one can be excluded from getting insurance
  • Everyone has to get insurance coverage or face tax penalties
  • The ACA has established state-administered Health Insurance Marketplaces where individuals, families and small businesses can shop for health insurance
  • The bill expands low-income care through expansions to Medicaid and federal health insurance subsidies

Clearing Up Some Misconceptions about Obamacare:
Some news sources have run inaccurate information about Obamacare, so these are a few of the most common misconceptions about the law:

  • Obamacare is not a healthcare plan; it’s a series of rules and regulations for the insurance industry, combined with expansions of federal programs and federal subsidies
  • The Obama care bill does not give health-care subsidies to undocumented immigrants
  • The law does not set up “death panels” – the closest thing is the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) that basically tries to make sure that the decisions that doctors make are supported by evidence, but in no way “rations” care or decides who lives or who dies

Ultimately, Obamacare attempts to ensure that people who need access to a good healthcare plan can get it. The Affordable Health Care Act imposes regulations on the insurance industry that will end exclusionary tactics, reduce premiums and hopefully improve overall access to health care. The bulk of these changes have either already begun, or will roll out this year through 2014.

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