HFSF Public Policy Documents:
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“Whether or not you have health insurance right now, the reforms we seek will bring stability and security that you don’t have today. This isn’t about politics. This is about people’s lives. This is about people’s businesses. This is about our future.”
~ President Barack Obama ~
On March 23, 2010, President Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), one of the most significant social policy bills enacted in decades. The law is projected to provide health insurance coverage to more than 32 million Americans, establish oversight of the health insurance market, improve the health care delivery system, promote prevention and public health and support a number of new programs and services. While the act’s provisions will continue to be implemented through 2016, its reforms are already benefiting millions of Americans in important ways.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, since the passing of the ACA:
More than 3.1 million young adults have gained health insurance.
Over 110,000 Americans with pre-existing medical conditions gained affordable coverage.
Since 2009, health centers have increased the total number of patients served on an annual basis by 4 million people, and added more than 35,000 new full‐time positions, increasing their employment to more than 148,000 staff nationwide.
More than 6.6 million seniors saved over $7 billion on prescription drugs, the average person with Medicare will save approximately $5000 from 2012-2022, more than 34 million seniors and people with disabilities accessed no-cost sharing preventive services.
In 2011, tax credits helped an estimated 360,000 small businesses with the cost of providing health insurance for two million workers. The credit will increase in 2014.
The number of primary care providers in the National Health Service Corps more than doubled since 2008.
And on October, 1,2013, a key component of the Affordable Care Act takes effect when the new Health Insurance Marketplace opens for business, allowing millions of Americans who are uninsured or don’t get their coverage through work to comparison shop for a variety of quality, affordable plans that best meet their health care needs.
However, Florida is “a lap behind” compared to other states with embracing ACA implementation. Florida, the lead state in a legal challenge to the constitutionality of the ACA, placed a proposed constitutional amendment intended to invalidate a key ACA provision on the ballot. The state also has rejected, refused to accept or declined to seek a number of federal funding opportunities, resulting in tens of millions of dollars lost which went to other states for their implementation efforts. However, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decided to uphold most of the health care law's provisions.
Health Foundation of South Florida remains committed to working with state and local agencies as well as other community-based organizations in identifying how to best take advantage of ACA related opportunities to create a better health care delivery system focused on primary care and prevention. The Foundation will continue to support public education and awareness efforts to better inform the public about the benefits, opportunities, and potential consequences of the ACA. For more information on health care reform efforts in Florida, visit Florida CHAIN: http://www.floridachain.org/. For general information, see: www.healthcare.gov