The Affordable Care Act is already making a difference in the lives of millions of Americans. In Maine many of the programs have started using the Dirigo Health Agency. Starting tomorrow, the Patient’s Bill of Rights goes into effect, putting people, not insurance companies, in control of health care. The Act will cut the deficit and does not raise taxes.
Here’s what the Patient’s Bill of Rights means:
* Insurance companies can no longer bar families from purchasing coverage because of a child’s pre-existing condition.
* No more lifetime coverage limits. Insurance companies can no longer put a lifetime limit on the amount of coverage you can receive.
* Young adults can stay on their parent’s health insurance plan up to age 26 if their job doesn’t provide health care benefits — a huge relief for many parents and recent college graduates.
* If you join or purchase a new plan, the insurance company will be required to provide preventive care like mammograms, colonoscopies, immunizations, pre-natal and baby care without charging you any out of pocket costs.
* If you purchase or join a new plan, you have the right to choose your own doctor in your insurer network.
* Insurance companies will not be allowed to charge you more for out of network emergency services if you purchase or join a new a plan.