Health reform explained: What does healthcare reform mean for families?

family_picHow do the new health care reform mandates affect my family? This common question is sweeping the Internet as many Americans try to decode the Affordable Care Act (especially after the high-profile June 2012 Supreme Court decision) in hopes of understanding how their family’s health care may change.

Overall, reform will allow for more control of your family’s health care coverage by expanding options and working to make affordable care and extended coverage key components of all health insurance policies. However, in 2014, most people will be required to obtain “minimum essential coverage” for themselves and their family. If you do not get health insurance you may face a penalty per family member. Most health coverage, such as Medicare and Medicaid, will meet the requirement. Nonetheless, this change could have a significant impact on you and your family and makes understanding the mandates more important than ever.

We’ve compiled a list of resources and highlights to help you better understand how health care reform may impact you and your family. You can also learn more about reform on Health Insurance Central.

Adult Child Coverage

If qualified, adult children may be able to receive dependent coverage until the age of 26. Eligibility is no longer limited by financial dependency, marital status or enrollment in school, though the extension of coverage may depend on the type of health insurance plan you are considering.

Preventive Coverage

Some preventive services and immunizations may be covered with no cost to you if you are in an eligible plan. You can learn more about preventive services on the BCBSM website.

Medicaid Expansion

In states that elect to accept the Medicaid expansion, health reform will allow adults, including parents, with an income of up to 138 percent of the federal poverty line (about  $15,000 for a single adult) to be eligible for Medicaid depending on their state of residence and if they meet certain criteria.

Have a health reform question? Ask a question, see answers and learn more about health insurance on Health Insurance Central, so you can better understand reform and future decisions.


Photo credit: rvillar

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