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March 24th, 2010
12:14 PM ET

When will health care reform affect you?

President Obama signed sweeping health care reform into law Tuesday. The Senate must now pass a package of changes that will reconcile the differences between Senate and House bills. If those changes are worked out, here is how health care reforms will affect you:

Within the first year

• Young adults will be able stay on their parents' insurance until their 27th birthday.

• Seniors will get a $250 rebate to help fill the "doughnut hole" in Medicare prescription drug coverage, which falls between the $2,700 initial limit and when catastrophic coverage kicks in at $6,154.

• Insurers will be barred from imposing exclusions on children with pre-existing conditions. Pools will cover those with pre-existing health conditions until health care coverage exchanges are operational.

• Insurers will not be able to rescind policies to avoid paying medical bills when a person becomes ill.

• Lifetime limits on benefits and restrictive annual limits will be prohibited.

• New plans must provide coverage for preventive services without co-pays. All plans must comply by 2018.

• A temporary reinsurance program will help offset costs of coverage for companies that provide early retiree health benefits for those ages 55 to 64.

• New plans will be required to implement an appeals process for coverage determinations and claims.

• Adoption tax credit and assistance exclusion will increase by $1,000. The bill makes the credit refundable and extends it through 2011.

• A 10 percent tax will be imposed on amounts paid for indoor tanning services on or after July 1.

• Businesses with fewer than 50 employees will get tax credits covering 35 percent of their health care premiums, increasing to 50 percent by 2014.

How the reforms will affect you by 2011, 2013, 2014, and 2018...

Sources: House Ways and Means, Energy and Commerce, and Education and Labor committees; Kaiser Family Foundation

soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Noel Blankman

    I have a business that currently provides insurance to our 30 employees. Does this explanation of the Bill assert that I will get a 30% to 50% Credit going forward?

    March 24, 2010 at 12:51 pm |
  2. Don

    Hopefully it won't ...my best case scenario is it is an imperceptible change. Personally I have not used any aspect of the health care system in over 2 decades. That is why it concerns me that I am being punished for being healthy. If I am going to be forced to buy something I don't use wouldn't it seem logical to incentivize the program instead of penalizing those who will not be a burden to it? Why not offer a tax break for those who meet certain health standards. If the govt is going to have the final say shouldn't they make that say equitable for ALL the people. Punishing healthy people just doesn't seem very democratic to me...

    March 24, 2010 at 12:40 pm |
  3. Lissa Coffey

    I'm very glad we have health care reform. But it's not enough. Now we need INSURANCE reform! Insurance companies made an $8 billion profit last quarter and they're raising rates? And you know they'll use this bill to raise rates even more. Health insurance is the only insurance where agents make commissions every single month off of policy holders – and they do NOTHING to earn it! There is so much waste in that industry, and the customer pays for all of it. The best solution would be to take away the "profit" status of these insurance companies and make them non-profit organizations.

    March 24, 2010 at 12:30 pm |