The health-care marketplace has always been complex, making it difficult for consumers to make the right decision about their coverage. The Affordable Care Act offers key protections to ensure access to quality, affordable Ohio health insurance and care.
Measures to Secure Ohio Individual Health Insurance Coverage
Many Ohioans and Americans in general have what is termed a ‘pre-existing condition’, a health issue that existed before the person applied for Ohio individual health insurance. This medical condition could be something like heart disease or cancer or even something relatively minor like asthma or hay fever. Prior to the passing of the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies could refuse coverage to people with pre-existing conditions or charge them higher premiums when they bought health insurance directly from insurance companies.
Health insurance reform prohibits insurance companies from refusing coverage because of a person’s medical history or health risk. If a person becomes sick, but does not default in paying the premium, insurers will have to renew the policy.
- Ends denials for pre-existing conditions: Children and teens under age 19 cannot be denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition. Starting January 1, 2014, insurers cannot refuse coverage or raise premiums based on the patient’s health history. People who do not have health coverage but can afford it will have to purchase a plan or pay a penalty.
- Bridges the gap for the sick and uninsured: Until 2014, the Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) will allow people with preexisting conditions who have been uninsured for at least six months to get insurance.
- Premiums that vary by age: Ohio health insurance premiums now differ by age and not by health status. They are tied to the average rates for healthy individuals in the state.
- Helps pay for insurance and out-of-pocket costs: In 2014, tax credits will help lower- and middle-income families buy private insurance. Such families will also get help to pay for out-of-pocket costs like co-pays for doctor visits and annual deductibles.
- Coverage for young adults in a parent’s plan: Children up to age 26 can stay on their parent’s health plan even if they are living at home, married, or a student.
Closes Loopholes and Makes Health Insurance Fairer
The Act also closes Ohio health insurance loopholes by providing patients new rights and protections with regard to their Ohio health insurance. It also seeks to make health insurance more fair with the opening of health exchanges, by ending gender bias and reducing age-based penalties.
To know more about your specific benefits and purchase an Ohio individual health insurance plan that will best meet your needs, contact a professional licensed Ohio-based health insurance broker.