In just under 100 fast-approaching days, the portion of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that applies to individual health coverage goes into effect. On January 1, 2014, health care coverage will become more accessible and more affordable to millions of Americans.
Now, this means most individuals without employer-based coverage will have to buy qualifying coverage on their own to avoid a penalty on their 2014 tax return. You can’t argue there’s nothing more important than your health, but at the same time you probably have many questions.
We care about our members and the communities we serve, so today we’re touching on some key features of the new healthcare act we feel you should know about.
• Coverage will be guaranteed and required. You will be able to get health insurance coverage, even if you have a pre-existing condition. What's more, you won't have to pay more to have pre-existing medical conditions covered.
• All new plans will include coverage for essential health benefits. There is a comprehensive package of benefits including preventive services, maternity and newborn care, emergency services and more that all new individual healthcare plans will be required to cover.
• You may qualify for cost assistance. Based on your income, you may now be able to get help paying for health insurance coverage. Premium tax credits and help with cost-sharing will be available to those who qualify.
• The Health Insurance Marketplace will offer a new way to shop. Open enrollment begins October 1 and extends for a six-month period, through March 31, 2014. Through the online Marketplace at www.healthcare.gov you’ll be able to compare prices and benefits from a number of health insurance companies offering coverage.
We encourage you to visit http://www.becoveredtexas.org and spend some time looking at the information provided, and then talk to a licensed insurance agent who can guide you through the process of securing the right coverage for you.
Brandei Burridge, LHIC, CBC, SGS, is a TDECU Insurance Agency licensed health care agent.
If you wish to contact Brandei, call TDECU Insurance at 888.833.7358 −
Insurance products are not deposits; not NCUA insured; and not guaranteed by TDECU Insurance Agency, LLC or TDECU.