By Nicole Duritz, Vice President, Health AARP Education & Outreach
Many families across the country already know how the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act, is helping them. They’ve been able to maintain coverage for their college-age children, or buy health insurance after being previously labeled “uninsurable.” Still millions more have discounts on expensive prescription drugs.
But if none of these realities are yours, you may be wondering, “What’s in the new health care law for me?”
AARP’s Health Law Guide, www.aarp.org/healthlawguide, can create a personalized report that tells you how the law will help you. If you are uninsured, your report will identify coverage you may be eligible to receive.
Because different parts of the law will go into effect over a number of years, it is a good idea to learn about the changes that are in store for you this year. In addition to providing your personalized report, the AARP Health Law Guide can help you stay on top of the law as it is implemented.
In the meantime, here are just a few changes you may appreciate right now:
- If you are one of the people in North Dakota who will reach the Medicare Part D doughnut hole—the threshold at which you are responsible for a higher portion of your drug costs—you you will receive a 50 percent discount on brand-name drugs and a 14 percent discount on generic drugs while you’re in the coverage gap.
- If you have Medicare, you can receive preventive care services such as mammograms, immunizations and screenings for cancer and diabetes, as well as an annual wellness visit, all at no cost to you.
- If private insurers consider you “high-risk” due to prior or current health problems, and if you have been uninsured for at least six months, you may buy insurance through the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PHIP) in North Dakota.
- If you have an uninsured adult child under age 26, you may be able to add him to your family’s existing insurance plan.
- If you get sick, you will not lose your coverage as long as you continue to pay the premiums.
Whether you currently have health coverage or not, it’s important to get the facts about how the law could impact your situation. In less than five minutes, AARP’s Health Law Guide can help you figure out how the new law benefits you and your family, how the law works with your current coverage, and what other health coverage may be available.
You can learn even more about your health benefits from the experts during AARP’s free webinar, “The Health Care Law, Things You Need to Know,” which was on March 1. For more information, visit https://event.on24.com/eventRegistration/EventLobbyServlet?target=registration.jsp&eventid=401023&sessionid=1&key=55FDBFED4191A25A62E12BF991E2E2DE&sourcepage=register.