HARRISBURG, Oct. 1, 2013 – The new federal health care insurance plan providing low-cost coverage to millions of uninsured Americans and more than 500,000 uninsured Pennsylvanians opened its doors today, Sen. John Blake said, as it began accepting applications for enrollment.
“Many have fostered fear and confusion about the Affordable Care Act even before its full implementation,” Blake said. “But, fear and confusion must now give way as the time is at hand for those who have been seeking the security of affordable health care insurance to finally get peace of mind for themselves and for their families.”
“The Affordable Care Act is the law of the land and it is important for people to learn all they can, now, about its provisions, costs, key deadlines and benefits” he said.
People wanting health insurance under the Affordable Care Act have between now and March 31 to enroll. Coverage under ACA begins Jan. 1, 2014.
Blake said it is important for everyone to remember that the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, does not replace private insurance, Medicare or Medicaid Assistance.
“If you like the health insurance you have and can afford it, stick with it,” the senator said.
ACA does require everyone to have health insurance or to have an exemption or pay a fee if they choose not to carry that protection.
Young adults can remain on a parent’s health insurance plan until they are 26 years old, Blake said.
Help is also available to people who want Affordable Care Act coverage but need help paying the monthly bills. “Cost assistance” is available through Pennsylvania’s marketplace to people who make less than 400 percent of the federal poverty level, which is $45,960 for an individual and $94, 200 for a family of four.
Businesses also have opportunities under ACA, Blake said.
“It is the goal of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, to give more people – and business owners – affordable, quality health insurance and to reduce the growth in health care spending throughout the country,” Blake said.
“Of course, people can always call my office or stop by at my district offices for advice or helpful information and literature on ACA,” he said.