Congressman Schiff believes that affordable, quality and stable access to care is the key to ensuring a productive work force in which individuals and small businesses can innovate, thrive and spur economic activity. With our health insurance system intrinsically linked to the economic recovery of both California and the nation as a whole, Congressman Schiff believes we must do more to reduce health care costs.
The Affordable Care Act will provide stable coverage that cannot be taken away, won't be lost when you change jobs, and will provide bolstered and additional insurance choices in an invigorated and competitive system of market-based exchanges. In our district alone, the bill will provide tax credits and financial assistance to more than 135,000 families and 15,000 small businesses to help them afford coverage, and extend coverage to 80,000 uninsured residents. It will also stabilize and improve coverage for the 368,000 residents who already have insurance. Additionally, it will strengthen Medicare and close the "donut hole" for 94,000 recipients, and prevent Medicare from becoming insolvent in 2017.
The bill responds to the challenges facing our nation in a fiscally responsible manner, reducing the deficit by more than $1.3 trillion in the next two decades, and ensuring the economic security of our children.
Additional Highlights of the Affordable Care Act:
Young adults can now stay on their parents' health plan until their 26th birthday.
New plans offer free coverage of key preventive services, such as immunizations, mammograms, and other cancer screenings.
Children under age 19 can no longer be denied coverage by an insurance company for having a "pre-existing condition."
Insurance companies can no longer place a lifetime limit on insurance coverage, saving many families from having to declare bankruptcy.
Seniors will now receive a 50 percent discount on brand-name drugs if they enter the Medicare Part D "donut hole' coverage gap -- a discount that grows until the "donut hole' is fully closed in 2020.
Insurance companies can no longer drop individuals' coverage simply because they get sick.
Insurance companies can no longer place restrictive annual limits on coverage -- with annual limits completely eliminated by 2014.
Insurance companies must now spend at least 80 percent of premiums on covering medical services -- rather than administrative expenses, CEO pay and profits.
Insurance companies must now publish on the Internet detailed justifications for any premium increases they are seeking that are more than 10 percent.