Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act

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Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)

What the Act Offers

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act offers many healthcare benefits to a diverse group of American citizens. However, there are a few downsides as well. The major portions of the act deal with four primary issues:

1. Increasing the health care coverage of patients with pre-existing conditions

2. Expanding access to health care insurance to over 30 million uninsured Americans

3. Expanding Medicare/Medicaid Coverage

4. Mandating Health Insurance

Before PPACA was enacted insurers could discriminate against those with pre-existing medical conditions. The discrimination usually came in the form of denying coverage, striking patients from the coverage rolls when they got sick, charging higher premiums, excluding patients with certain medical conditions, imposing lifetime dollar limits on essential benefits, and imposing yearly spending caps. All of these occurrences will have been rendered illegal by the ending effective date of 2019.

The U.S. Census Bureau (2011) estimated the number of uninsured Americans to be 49.9 million in 2010. Provisions in this act are expected to expand coverage to 32 million of these uninsured people by 2019. One of the major provisions that will bring down the uninsured number is the allowance for “children” up to the age of 26 to be enrolled on their parents’ health insurance policy. The Congressional Budget Office
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