What Is ObamaCare?
ObamaCare is another name for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the health care legislation that was signed into law on March 23, 2010. The law focuses primarily on health insurance coverage, health care costs, and preventive care.
Why Was It Created?
The law was designed to give consumers control over their health care by allowing them to make informed decisions based on knowing all their options. This gives people the ability to compare and choose health insurance coverage that works best for them.
Prior to the implementation of ObamaCare the insurance industry was not being governed by rules and regulations that ObamCare created. These rules are necessary to protect consumers - you - from insurance fraud, abuse, and it prevents insurance companies from wasting your hard-earned premium dollars.
Why Is The Affordable Care Act Called ObamaCare?
The word ObamaCare was first used in 2007, and is attributed to former Govenor Mitt Romney. As reported by First Read, a section on nbcnews.com:
They don't understand," Romney said. "The path of Europe is not the way to go. Socialized medicine, Hillary-care, Obama-care, they don't get it."
In time the term "ObamaCare" was used by healthcare reform opponents to belittle the Affordable Care Act (ACA). However, the President began embracing the word in 2011. He used ObamaCare regularly, which resulted in ObamaCare taking on a new and different meaning - an easy to remember synonym for the new healthcare law.
This strategy had the effect of turning the tables on critics who were using ObamaCare negatively in order to make people think of the new healthcare law in a derogatory way.
Below is one example of President Obama using ObamaCare - at a campaign event in Cincinnati, Ohio in July 2012:
While speaking about the difficulties of small business owners obtaining health insurance for their families, President Obama stated:
"So when you hear about the Affordable Care Act - Obamacare - and I don’t mind the name because I really do care. That’s why we passed it."
What Does the Health Insurance Law Do For You?
ObamaCare puts consumers back in charge of their health care. Under the law, a new “Patient’s Bill of Rights” was introduced on June 22, 2010. It included protections for health coverage that started on or after September 23, 2010.
The first order of business was to help children (and eventually all Americans) with pre-existing conditions acquire and keep health insurance coverage.
Before ObamaCare it was not unusual for insurance companies to deny families coverage for their children with pre-existing condtions.
The Patient's Bill of Rights also protected people's choice of doctors, and put an end to lifetime limits on the care a person could receive.
You can read more about the Patient's Bill of Rights in this 2011 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service www.healthcare.gov. The law can be read in full here. The certified full text of the Affordable Care Act law can also be downloaded in pdf form from the Government Printing Office, here: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-111publ148/pdf/PLAW-111publ148.pdf
For other resources and information about health insurance, the best place to go is HealthCare.gov. If you are an individual and prefer to call, the number is 1-800-318-2596. (for TTY call 1-855-889-4325). You can use this number to start or finish a health insurance application, compare plans, enroll or ask a question. Help is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Healthcare.gov is also the primary resource for small businesses. The toll-free number for business insurance questions is: 1-800-706-7893, or TTY: 711. Help is available during the following days and hours: Mon - Fri, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat - Sun, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET.
ObamaCare.com exists to help those in the community to understand and benefit from the Affordable Care Act.