With about a week to go before all employers must comply with certain elements of the Affordable Care Act and individual health exchanges open, tensions are rising as lawmakers in Washington find themselves embroiled in a bitter battle over defunding "Obamacare."
A national, nonprofit consumer health organization is calling October 1 a milestone, when more than 2.4 million New Yorkers may enroll in health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Two congressional representatives say many are probably unaware of the financial help available.
With some uncertainty and much anticipation, New Yorkers join all Americans in preparing for a monumental change in the nation’s health care. Proponents of the Affordable Care Act believe it should not be feared, but embraced. They aim to set the course of public perception in a friendly direction.
Public health exchanges are scheduled to begin operations October 1st. They were created by federal mandate to make affordable health insurance available to everyone.
The New York Health Benefit Exchange has listed health and dental plans for individuals and small business owners that will be available for enrollment starting Oct. 1 and coverage beginning next year.
The exchange, established under a federal mandate, is expected to help enroll 1.1 million uninsured New Yorkers and includes subsidies for those who meet certain income thresholds.
It has also changed its name to "NY State of Health"
The debate over health care reform has been remarkable. The Obama Administration offers a plan based on the program in Massachusetts, which was developed as the result of a bipartisan agreement. The Congress approves it and the US Supreme Court rules it to be legal.
Uninsured Americans face major decisions on health coverage, and the deadline is fast approaching. The good news for New Yorkers is, they will have access to plenty of personalized help in making their Affordable Care Act choices. Susan Dooha with the Center for Independence of the Disabled-New York says the Act is opening the door for up to a million New Yorkers to gain access to health coverage, and they won’t have to go it alone.
Last week some of the economic benefits of the federal health care reform law became evident. The Cuomo Administration released its estimates on the costs of health insurance for those who must pay for coverage – people who don’t get health insurance from the government or their employer. Virtually all New Yorkers will have to have health coverage by January 1, 2014.
As the nation moves closer to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the debate continues. The House of Representatives’ leadership will, once again, advance legislation to repeal the law. Predictably, the effort will fail.