Obamacare (Affordable Care Act)

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  • The second round of open enrollment for Obamacare begins today, allowing those who didn't obtain health insurance last year the opportunity to get covered. If you are one of those individuals who didn't get health insurance during the first open enrollment, or if you are like me and want to search for new options, you have until February 15, 2015 to make your decision.
  • Walmart, our nation's largest retailer, is cutting some 30,000 part-time employee's health care benefits, due to the rising costs for the company.
  • Republicans fall in line, Democrats fall in love. This cheesy and juvenile saying drives me crazy, but it's one that I've unfortunately come to accept as one hundred percent accurate. Despite Barack Obama's presidency being a resounding success, he's sitting at a forty percent approval rating and he might very well lose the senate.
  • On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled that Hobby Lobby could deny its employees certain health care coverage, in this case contraception, based on religious beliefs. This means that companies can now prohibit or restrict its employees from partaking in actions that are legal under US law but not in line the religious views of the company.
  • Need a one stop shop if you still haven't applied for health insurance coverage and are wondering what you need to do? Look no further. My hope is that this article will provide you everything you need to know to enroll in a health insurance plan before this years deadline.
  • The deadline to sign up for coverage under the Affordable Care Act is fast approaching. For those of you who have not signed up for coverage yet, there are some very important things that you will need to know going forward. Let's start with the most important update. If you do not sign up for coverage by the end of the day on March 31, you may have some wiggle room to sign up.
  • According to the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the national poverty rate for the continental US (for 2014) is $11,670/year. That's for one person, living by themselves. For every extra person in the household, you add $4,060.
  • On Tuesday Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments on what has become to be known as "The Hobby Lobby" case. I may be accused of being too hyperbolic, but I believe this case has the potential to redefine the concept of religious freedom for years to come.

Overview of Law

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, is a law passed by Congress in 2010 and upheld as Constitutional by the United States Supreme Court in 2012. The ACA was designed to expand medical insurance coverage to Americans that did not already have it by offering affordable and competitive rates through a newly created Health Insurance Marketplace and providing subsidies to individuals who purchase coverage. The law also expands Medicaid eligibility to individuals in states that choose to accept the expansion. The main aspect of the ACA is the mandate that insurance companies accept all applications, regardless of any pre-existing condition an individual may have. The law also forbids insurers from dropping individuals when they become sick and prevents companies from placing annual or lifetime limits on coverage. Another important aspect of the ACA is the provisions guaranteeing greater equality for women. The law mandates that all insurers, with the exception of religious institutions, provide contraceptive coverage for any women that desire it. Most importantly, the ACA mandates insurance companies to spend 80-85% of premium dollars on total health costs and forces these companies to issue rebates to their policy holders if they don't comply. Patients also have a right to appeal any denial of service by an insurance company.

Obamacare (Affordable Care Act) Benefits & Positives

DatePositive Result\BenefitRank
03/23/10Insurance companies must spend 80% of the money raised from consumers premiums on health care and quality improvement
03/23/10Health insurance companies can not charge higher premiums for out of network emergency room care
03/23/10Insurance companies must provide consumers a short, easy to understand summary of their benefits and coverage
03/23/10Mental health and drug addiction coverage is an "essential benefit" that can not be denied
03/23/10Preventative services will be covered at no additional cost
03/23/10Women are no longer charged higher premiums because of their gender
03/23/10Consumers are guaranteed the right to appeal decisions made by their health insurance provider
03/23/10HIV Testing Will Now Be Covered Under Obamacare
03/23/10$143 billion in deficit reduction estimated between 2010-2019 from health care reform law provisions
03/23/10Consumers guaranteed the right to choose the primary care doctor or pediatrician from their health plan’s provider network
03/23/10Insurers selling to groups of 50 or more employees must spend 85% of premiums on medical care and quality improvement
03/23/10Annual dollar limits on health benefits restricted and phased out by 2014
03/23/10Health care insurance plans prohibited from putting a lifetime limit on the benefits you receive
03/23/1050% discount on prescription drug costs for seniors in the Medicare "donut hole" starting in 2011
03/23/10$250 rebate for those in the Medicare Prescription drug "donut hole" during 2010
03/23/10Young adults can stay on parent's insurance plan up until age 26
03/23/10Children under 19 can no longer be denied coverage or benefits for a pre-existing condition
03/23/10People denied coverage for a pre-existing condition given access to a temporary high risk health insurance plan
03/23/10People with a pre-existing condition cannot be denied health coverge by an insurance company starting in 2014


Fact Checking Articles on Obamacare (Affordable Care Act)

DateArticle NameAbout
08/17/14The Five Biggest Lies About Obamacare
05/23/14Obamacare is 'one big fat VA'Kimberly Guilfoyle & Department of Veterans Affairs
03/24/14Rick Scott's political committee says Obamacare has led to 300,000 health plans canceledRick Scott & Florida
03/17/14Boehner’s claim that Obamacare has resulted in a ‘net loss’ of people with health insuranceMedicaid & Health Insurance Industry
03/11/14Update: Julie Boonstra’s claim her Obamacare plan is ‘unaffordable’ gets downgraded to Thre...
03/07/14Deep mysteries of the Medicaid expansionMedicaid, Rick Scott & Florida
02/28/14The missing context in yet another AFP ad featuring yet another Obamacare victimAmericans for Prosperity & Health Insurance Industry
02/26/14Is Obamacare a ‘job killer’?
02/08/14Two sides to Obamacare, only one factualBarack Obama & 113th Congress Republicans
02/06/14Fact Check: Anti-Obamacare Chorus Is Off KeyBarack Obama & Health Insurance Industry
02/04/14No, CBO did not say Obamacare will kill 2 million jobsJobs & Congressional Budget Office
01/14/14Rubio’s claim that Medicaid expansion funds will ‘go away’Medicaid, Marco Rubio & Florida
01/10/14Medicaid Estate Recovery ProgramMedicaid
12/31/13Stunning new report undermines central GOP Obamacare claimMedicaid, 113th Congress Republicans & Health Insurance Industry
12/15/13Texas has highest uninsured rate and most uninsured children in countryMedicaid & Texas

Conservative Extremism About Obamacare (Affordable Care Act)

DateConservativeLocationAbout
05/05/14Stacey CampfieldPersonal BlogStacey Campfield
Stacey Campfield
Democrats bragging about the number of manditory (sic) sign ups for Obamacare is like Germans bragging about the number of mandatory sign ups for train rides for Jews in the 40s.
04/11/14Ted CruzFox NewsTed Cruz
Ted Cruz
I think Burwell presents an ideal opportunity to examine the failures that are Obamacare. And four years ago, reasonable minds could have differed over whether this thing might work. Today, seeing the disaster, seeing the trainwreck that is Obamacare, in my view, it is the essence of pragmatism to acknowledge this thing isn't working. We need to start over, repeal every word of it. Start over.
03/25/14Michele BachmannHouse of RepresentativesMichele Bachmann
Michele Bachmann
It is not at only the election of the court, but at the election of the unnamed bureaucrat that decides, today we will have these killer drugs that we mandate. Tomorrow, what drugs will they take off the list? Will I not get life-saving drugs that I need to get?
02/24/14Ted NugentThe Dennis Miller ShowTed Nugent
Ted Nugent
Well I got to tell you, Dennis, I just don't agree at all. There was an incrementalism to what happened in Germany and other places historically, where they came in slowly. And they started, you know, the power struggle between the different races, and the power struggle between different elements of society. And they incrementally worked their way in. And I think that's what Obamacare is, that's what I think most of what he represents. The IRS -- I really believe that what we see with the IRS can be compared accurately and...
01/26/14Ted CruzFace the NationTed Cruz
Ted Cruz
“I didn’t threaten to shut down the government the last time. I don’t think we should ever shut down the government. I repeatedly voted… to fund the federal government.”

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