WASHINGTON, March 23 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "President Obama and the Congress have now delivered on their promise of a health insurance system that reflects the best values of America," said Dr. Jane L. Delgado, President and CEO of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, the nation's leading Hispanic health advocacy group. Dr. Delgado's comments came today after she attended, with Members of Congress and leading health advocates, the President's speech celebrating signing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Dr. Delgado emphasized, "President Obama's signature makes law today health insurance reform that will bring coverage to 32 million more people, remove barriers to purchasing coverage for the 15 million Americans with a chronic health condition and no insurance, bring support to small businesses to provide insurance, and help modest income families pay and choose the best insurance plan for them."
According to Dr. Delgado, there are changes that will take place this year that will have a meaningful impact for America's families at a time of economic stress. These include:
-- Children with a pre-existing condition will not be denied coverage (protection will extend to all persons in 2014). -- Uninsured persons with a pre-existing condition will have access to insurance through a national high-risk pool. -- Insurance companies will be banned from dropping coverage if an individual gets sick and can no longer place lifetime limits on the value of coverage. -- Health care plans will be required to allow young people to remain on their parent's insurance policy until their 26th birthday if they are not offered coverage at work. -- $250 rebate check to Medicare recipients who hit the Medicare Part D "donut hole" this year, starting in 2011 will receive a 50 percent discount on drugs in that gap. -- Small businesses (25 or less employees and average wage less than $40,000) that choose to offer coverage will begin to receive tax credits of up to 35 percent of premiums.
"Today we have taken an important step on the road to achieve the best health outcomes for all," concluded Dr. Delgado.
Editors Note: A timeline of how elements of health insurance reform will be implemented in the coming months and years is available at http://www.hispanichealth.org/. The Alliance's Statement of Principles on Access to Affordable Quality Health Care is available at http://www.hispanichealth.org/principles/. National Alliance for Hispanic Health
Web Site: http://www.hispanichealth.org/