The U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 Small Area Health Insurance Estimates report showed that the rate of Americans who lacked health insurance dropped between 2013 and 2019 in 2,909 counties and rose in just four counties after the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was implemented in 2014. (Photo courtesy of the United States Census Bureau.)
Health insurance premiums will cost $10 or less each month next year for four out of five consumers shopping for health insurance on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces, the Biden administration announced on Monday. The savings come from higher subsidies for most Americans that Congress passed last spring under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).
On Monday, Nov. 1, open enrollment for ACA plans will give consumers the widest variety of health insurance options and the lowest prices ever, said Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra. Also, HHS quadrupled the number of health insurance navigators available to guide consumers seeking information on how to sign up, and added an extra month to the open enrollment period, which ends on Jan. 15.
According to Becerra, health insurance costs are the lowest ever because the ARPA increased the subsidies for monthly premiums through Dec. 31, 2022. Technically, those increased funds are called enhanced premium tax credit subsidies, the Center for Health Insurance Reforms explained in a recent blog post about open enrollment.
With just over a week to go in June, the Affordable Care Act has already had a very successful month in two important ways.
First, the ACA hit a record for enrollment, topping 31 million Americans since the law went into effect in 2014, according to a report the federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued earlier this month. And, second, the ACA survived a challenge at the U.S. Supreme Court, as we reported last week.
To reach that figure of 31 million, the HHS report included the 20 million who have gained insurance through the marketplaces under the ACA itself and through other ACA insurance programs. Continue reading
Ruling 7-2 on Thursday in a challenge that Texas and other states brought against the Affordable Care Act, the U.S. Supreme Court found the plaintiffs lacked the legal standing to bring the lawsuit.
“The decision preserves health insurance subsidies for more than 20 million Americans and protections for tens of millions more whose preexisting medical conditions could otherwise prevent them from obtaining coverage,” as David G. Savage explained in an article for The Los Angeles Times. Continue reading
Source: Marketplace Eligibility Among the Uninsured: Implications for a Broadened Enrollment Period and ACA Outreach, KFF, Jan. 27, 2021.According to a KFF report on marketplace eligibility among the uninsured, more than half of the uninsured who could get a free bronze plan live in Texas, Florida, North Carolina, or Georgia. Other states with large shares of uninsured residents who could sign up for a no-premium bronze plan include Alabama, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming.
On Monday, the Biden administration reopened the marketplaces for the Affordable Care Act for three months under a special open enrollment period.
As health care journalists we may want to consider the civic duty we have to explain some of the problems consumers are likely to face during this special enrollment period (SEP) through May 15.
One of our primary obligations may be to explain how consumers can avoid getting ripped off or being stuck with a health insurance policy that does not provide the full coverage consumers need. (See details below on how scammers have preyed on consumers seeking ACA-compliant coverage.) Continue reading
In my last post, I addressed President-elect Joe Biden’s proposals for expanding the Affordable Care Act and the slim likelihood that programs like a public option could get through a closely divided Senate ― particularly if Republicans end up with a narrow one- or two-seat majority after the Georgia run-offs.
But Biden and the leaders he picks to run HHS and CMS will have broad executive power to shape health care, just as President Donald Trump and his appointees did. Continue reading