Jun 12, 2013
Are you wondering how the Affordable Care Act will change the way you get your health insurance?
Big changes are coming in October 2013. Big changes for a lot of people.
The Affordable Care Act is expected to help increase access to health care. Health insurance Marketplace will be an important part of that.
Most people get health insurance through their employers. But people without this option will now be able to shop for health insurance at Marketplace as an alternative to buying coverage directly from individual health insurers.
Over 5 million are uninsured in California alone. Experts predict that by 2016, more than 25 million people will use Marketplace to buy health insurance.
Think of an exchange as an online market. It’s a website where shoppers can research all their options and then buy health insurance. There are different types of exchanges… But today we are focusing on the public exchange, or Marketplace.
The new Marketplace is easy to use, and will be open October 2013, allowing consumers to shop for health plans that will begin on January 1, 2014.
The Affordable Care Act requires every state to offer an exchange to its residents. States have a few options:
No matter what each state decides to do, a Marketplace will be available to residents in every state.
Public Marketplaces will exist for both individuals, who are buying insurance for themselves, and for small group employers, who can buy insurance to offer to their employees. The small group exchange is called SHOP – short for Small Business Health Options Program.
There are a few reasons Marketplaces will become popular:
Many individuals who shop on Marketplace will be new to health insurance. To help make shopping easier, health plans on a Public Marketplace will be labeled:
The Metallic level helps shoppers understand the level of coverage a plan offers – how much they will need to pay and what the plan pays.
We will discuss these levels and more next week for Wellness Wednesday!