9 ways life has changed since the Affordable Care Act

ACAMonday, March 23, 2015, we celebrated the fifth anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and celebrate we should! The road to the President signing the legislation into law was long and complicated, and while we know there have been ups and downs during the implementation process, we also know some things for sure now:

  1. 16.4 million Americans have gained health care coverage since March of 2010 (more people than the 2013 populations of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago combined!)
  2. The uninsured rate in America is at the lowest level recorded across five decades of data
  3. Nearly 3 million young adults have been covered through their parents’ plans up to age 26
  4. The uninsured rate for young adults has dropped by more than 40 percent
  5. 129 million Americans with pre-existing conditions can now choose insurance coverage that must cover those conditions and new health issues, too
  6. The availability of insurance coverage, even with a pre-existing or chronic condition, has provided a reduction in the volume of uncompensated care due to lack of insurance or someone being underinsured
  7. Hospital uncompensated care costs were $7.4 billion lower in 2014;
  8. Insurance can no longer be rescinded or ended due to a diagnosis (in other words, you can no longer lose your insurance just because you need it)
  9. 105 million Americans will no longer face a lifetime limit on their health coverage.

It is not hard to imagine the impact of that last point on a family with a child with profound disabilities. Here at Easter Seals, we know provisions of this law go right to the heart of what children and adults with disabilities need to live fulfilling lives: before the Affordable Care Act was passed in 2010, attaining and retaining insurance coverage was often beyond their reach. Today the lives of literally millions of adults and children are improved by having access to insurance coverage, and we are all better for it.

*All statistics have been referenced from this statement on the Affordable Care Act by the White House.


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