From: Partners and Stakeholders
To: Carlis Williams, Regional Administrator, Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Region IV Atlanta
Subject: From Affordable Healthcare to Healing Our Nation
As part of a continuing effort to promote economic security on Our Street, USA, we have extended our November 27 deadline to December 7 to include ACF Partners and Stakeholders. Many of our friends in the “beloved community” support efforts by the Obama Administration to address historic disparities in healthcare policy. Still, too many have chosen to oppose the Law of the Land (PL 111-148). Any effort to minimize divisive political rhetoric and mobilize neighbors toward inclusivity demonstrates our choice for COMMUNITY over CHAOS. We hope our ACF partners and stakeholders will be empowered by our regional administrator’s outreach, and act on this opportunity for healing America.
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--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------To: Partners and Stakeholders
From: Carlis Williams, Regional Administrator
Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Region IV Atlanta
Subject: Affordable Care Act
As a part of our effort to keep our ACF stakeholders in Region IV cognizant of important information concerning the Affordable Care Act, this is the first in a series of correspondence that you will receive from us on a regular basis. We encourage you to share this information with those that you employ and/or serve as you find appropriate.
There are 4 ways consumers can apply for and enroll in the Marketplace coverage:
· Online at HealthCare.gov
· Over the phone by calling the 24/7 customer service center (1-800-318-2596, TTY 1-855-889-4325)
· Working with a trained person in your local community (Find Local Help)
· Submit a paper application through the call center or downloading a copy at marketplace.cms.gov.
Because of the Affordable Care Act, people who have insurance have more choices and stronger coverage than ever before, and for those that do not have insurance, or families and small businesses who buy their coverage but aren’t happy with it, a new day has arrived.
Purchasing health insurance through the marketplace will provide families and small businesses a better deal, and a new way to find health coverage that fits their needs and their budgets. Open enrollment in the Marketplace began October 1, with coverage starting as soon as Jan 1, 2014. In addition to the various websites above, families and small business can visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/a-better-bargain#health to find more information. The health care law will provide better options, better value, better health and a stronger Medicare program by:
The Health Insurance Marketplace
As of October 1, 2013, the Health Insurance Marketplace makes it easy for people to compare qualified health plans, get answers to questions, find out if they are eligible for lower costs for private insurance or health programs like Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and enroll in health coverage.
New coverage options for young adults
Under the health care law, if your plan covers children, you can now add or keep your children on your health insurance policy until they turn 26 years old. Thanks to this provision, over 3 million young people who would otherwise have been uninsured have gained coverage nationwide.
Ending discrimination for pre-existing conditions
Today, insurers can no longer deny coverage to children because of a pre-existing condition, like asthma or diabetes, under the health care law. And beginning in 2014, health insurers will no longer be able to charge more or deny coverage to anyone because of a pre-existing condition. The health care law also established a temporary health insurance program for individuals who were denied health insurance coverage because of a pre-existing condition
Providing better value for your premium dollar through the 80/20 Rule
Health insurance companies now have to spend at least 80 cents of your premium dollar on health care or improvements to care, or provide you a refund.
Scrutinizing unreasonable premium increases
In every State and for the first time under Federal law, insurance companies are required to publicly justify their actions if they want to raise rates by 10 percent or more.
Removing lifetime limits on health benefits
The law bans insurance companies from imposing lifetime dollar limits on health benefits – freeing cancer patients and individuals suffering from other chronic diseases from having to worry about going without treatment because of their lifetime limits. The law also restricts the use of annual limits and bans them completely in 2014.
Covering preventive services with no deductible or co-pay
The health care law requires many insurance plans to provide coverage without cost sharing to enrollees for a variety of preventive health services, such as colonoscopy screening for colon cancer, Pap smears and mammograms for women, well-child visits, and flu shots for all children and adults. In 2011 and 2012, 71 million Americans with private health insurance gained preventive service coverage with no cost-sharing. For policies renewing on or after August 1, 2012, women can now get coverage without cost-sharing of even more preventive services they need. Approximately 47 million women, will now have guaranteed access to additional preventive services without cost-sharing.
Increasing support for community health centers
The health care law increases the funding available to community health centers nationwide. Health Center grantees have received numerous Federal dollars under the health care law to support ongoing health center operations and to establish new health center sites, expand services, and/or support major capital improvement projects.
A Stronger Medicare Program
Making prescription drugs affordable for seniors
Seniors with Medicare saved millions of dollars on prescription drugs because of the Affordable Care Act. Thanks to the health care law, coverage for both brand name and generic drugs will continue to increase over time until the coverage gap is closed. Nationally, over 6.6 million people with Medicare have saved over $7 billion on drugs since the law’s enactment.
Covering preventive services with no deductible or co-pay
With no deductibles or co-pays, cost is no longer a barrier for seniors and people with disabilities who want to stay healthy by detecting and treating health problems early. In 2012 alone, an estimated 34.1 million people benefited from Medicare’s coverage of preventive services with no cost-sharing.
Protecting Medicare’s solvency
The health care law extends the life of the Medicare Trust Fund by ten years. From 2010 to 2012, Medicare spending per beneficiary grew at 1.7 percent annually, substantially more slowly than the per capita rate of growth in the economy. And the health care law helps stop fraud with tougher screening procedures, stronger penalties, and new technology. Over the last four years, the administration’s fraud enforcement efforts have recovered $14.9 billion from fraudsters. For every dollar spent on health care-related fraud and abuse activities in the last three years the administration has returned $7.90.