(BOSTON, MA) – Robert Restuccia, Executive Director of Community Catalyst, released the following statement honoring the six month anniversary of the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
“Today – six months to the day that President Obama signed the historic Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act – marks a new beginning for many Americans who have long suffered under a broken health care system. Parents of children who have a pre-existing condition will now have the peace of mind knowing their children can no longer be denied coverage. People won’t have to worry about having their coverage dropped or capped if they contract or are fighting a serious illness. As many as two million young adults under the age of 26 will now be eligible for coverage under their parents’ health insurance plans. And seniors will benefit from prescription drug savings and free preventive care.
“The changes that go into effect today are an important step forward in making our health system more responsive to the needs of American families, but they are just the tipping point. As other critical provisions go into effect over the next few years, we will see monumental improvements: 32 million Americans will gain access to affordable coverage; new standards will be put in place to protect people from “junk” insurance; and investments in prevention and public health will make our country healthier.”
Pro-consumer provisions that go into effect today include:
- Ban on rescissions: Insurance companies can no longer rescind coverage when someone becomes ill.
- Full access to coverage for children: Children under 19 can no longer be rejected from health care plans due to pre-existing conditions.
- No more “lifetime limits:” Insurers can no longer limit the amount of coverage someone can receive over their lifetime.
- Free preventive care: New health insurance plans can no longer charge enrollees cost-sharing like co-pays or deductibles for preventive services such as cancer screenings and immunizations. Seniors receive free preventive care under Medicare.
- Medicare protections: Anti-fraud measures will save money by cutting waste and abuse.
- Expanded coverage to young adults: Young adults can stay on their parents’ health plan until age 26.
About Community Catalyst
Community Catalyst is a national non-profit advocacy organization dedicated to quality affordable health care for all. Since 1997, Community Catalyst has been working to build the consumer and community leadership required to transform the American health system. With the belief that this transformation will happen when consumers are fully engaged and have an organized voice, Community Catalyst works in partnership with national, state and local consumer organizations, policymakers, and foundations, providing leadership and support to change the health care system so it serves everyone – especially vulnerable members of society. For more information, visit www.communitycatalyst.org.