AFFORDABLE CARE ACT
PATIENT PROTECTION AND AFFORDABLE CARE ACT OF
The following summary information is taken from
the United States U.S. Department of Health and
Human Services website at: http://www.healthcare.gov/law/features/index.html
(For information on the law in
Spanish, visit: http://www.cuidadodesalud.gov/)
The federal healthcare reform law, the Affordable
Care Act, was signed into law on March 23, 2010.
Many provisions of the law have already gone into
effect for individual and group health insurance
plans. Many other significant changes will
be phased in over the next few years, see the
summary below. One important upcoming milestone
will be the introduction of Exchanges, starting in
October 2013 through which individuals and small
employers will be able to buy health insurance
coverage, that will begin on January 1, 2014.
CONNECTICUT HEALTH CARE REFORM RESOURCES:
Summary of the Healthcare Reform Law:
Connecticut Insurance Department's website on,
"Health Care Reform - Consumer Resource Page" for
more details, visit http://www.ct.gov/cid/cwp/view.asp?a=4222&q=458776
Connecticut's Health Insurance Marketplace,
"Access Health CT", has information on options for
Connecticut residents and business owners,
starting in October 2013, with implementation in
January 2014, see http://www.accesshealthct.com/
2013 Law Implementation Basics
IMPROVING QUALITY OF CARE, LOWERING COSTS,
AND INCREASING ACCESS TO AFFORDABLE CARE:
•Improving Preventive Health Coverage To expand
the number of Americans receiving preventive care.
The law provides new funding to state Medicaid
programs that choose to cover preventive services
for patients at little or no cost.
•Expanding Authority to Bundle Payments. The law
establishes a national pilot program to encourage
hospitals, doctors, and other providers to work
together to improve the coordination and quality
of patient care.
•Open Enrollment in the Health Insurance
Marketplace Begins. Individuals and small
businesses can buy affordable and qualified health
benefit plans in this new transparent and
competitive insurance marketplace. Effective
October 1, 2013.
2014 Law Implementation Basics
•Prohibiting Discrimination Due to Pre-Existing
Conditions or Gender. The law implements strong
reforms that prohibit insurance companies from
refusing to sell coverage or renew policies
because of an individual’s pre-existing
•Eliminating Annual Limits on Insurance Coverage.
The law prohibits new plans and existing group
plans from imposing annual dollar limits on the
amount of coverage an individual may receive.
•Making Care More Affordable. Tax credits to make
it easier for the middle class to afford insurance
will become available for people with income
between 100% and 400% of the federal poverty level
who are not eligible for other affordable
coverage. The tax credit is advanceable, so it can
lower your premium payments each month, rather
than making you wait for tax time.
•Establishing the Health Insurance Marketplace.
Starting in 2014 if your employer doesn’t offer
insurance, you will be able to buy it directly in
the Health Insurance Marketplace. Individuals and
small businesses can buy affordable and qualified
health benefit plans in this new transparent and
competitive insurance marketplace. The Marketplace
will offer you a choice of health plans that meet
certain benefits and cost standards.
•Promoting Individual Responsibility. Under the
law, most individuals who can afford it will be
required to obtain basic health insurance coverage
or pay a fee to help offset the costs of caring
for uninsured Americans. If affordable
coverage. If it is not available to an individual,
he or she will be eligible for an exemption.
Effective January 1, 2014.
- The Center for Consumer Information and
Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) is charged with
helping implement many provisions of the
Affordable Care Act, the historic health reform
bill that was signed into law March 23, 2010.
CCIIO oversees the implementation of the
provisions related to private health insurance,
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services; Consumer's Reports; Kaiser Family
Foundation ; AARP; Center for Consumer
PREPARED BY: 211/tb
CONTENT LAST REVIEWED: May2013