The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), popularly known as Obamacare, came into law on March 23, 2010. The main goal of the Affordable Care Act was to change how health insurance is financed, delivered, and regulated in the United States.

Some of the overarching goals of the ACA include extended health insurance coverage to those that don’t have it. Its important to protect and maintain the rights of the insured. The ACA ensures that all health plans have basic benefits such as preventive care and prescription drugs. It was also intended to cut the cut the cost of health insurance and make it more affordable.

The question that might be of interest to many is how does health care reform help you? For starters, it depends on where and how you get your insurance.

Insurance through Employment
Employers with more than 50 full-time employees were not affected when the Affordable Act was signed into law. Businesses with less than 50 full-time employees were affected. The law means that small-group health plans must have the same benefits as those that you get when you buy coverage for yourself. If your employer’s health plan doesn’t meet certain basic requirements as spelled out in the ACA, then you can buy health insurance for yourself and by so doing get some tax credits.

Individual Coverage
The ACA brought lots of changes for patients with private individual insurance. Your coverage must meet the minimum ACA requirements; it must comply with all basic benefits such as prescription medication and preventive care. You can only get the government’s support in the form of subsidies to lower the cost of your plan.

Coverage Benefits
Health care reform has made it possible for more people to get coverage by ensuring that health insurance companies can’t charge more or turn away someone because they have a pre-existing medical condition. The ACA also makes it easier to get help in paying for your plan or being enrolled in cheaper plans. There are other plans, such as Medicaid and the Healthy Michigan Plan, that charges almost nothing for people to be insured in Michigan. This wasn’t possible before Obamacare.

 These are just some of the reasons health care has changed in the past decade. Click here to learn more about how to buy health insurance coverage.