In March 2010, President Barack Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which today many simply call the ACA or Obamacare. Since its implementation seven years ago, much has changed. With the 2018 open enrollment period starting on November 1st, now is a good time to reflect on some of the changes that the Affordable Care Act has fulfilled.
One of the biggest things that has changed is the amount of people covered. According to USA Today, before the ACA took effect, there were about 57 million Americans without health insurance. In early 2017, there were just 26 million uninsured Americans—33 million more people are now covered as compared to 2010.
But what about small businesses? The biggest change that we have seen since the Affordable Care Act took effect is that, due to the new regulations, a lot of small businesses have had to switch from group coverage to individual policies. Compliance is on the forefront due to new regulations with health care reform.
Since 2010, technology—especially online—has also made quite the impact. This is due to the fact that people have the ability to sign up through the exchange through the federal website, Healthcare.gov. Many employers are also offering their employees online enrollment.
Another effect of Obamacare is that there are fewer brokers in the health insurance field. Because of the amount of changes, many brokers that were working part-time have left the field because they have not been able to keep up with the competition.
With President Trump’s cabinet invested in repealing and replacing Obamacare, what the Affordable Care Act will look like in the next couple of years is a mystery. But so far, nothing is changing in the near future, and people should still plan on applying for health care for 2018 or else face paying a penalty at tax time.
If you have questions about your 2018 health insurance or current coverage, contact us today at 866-99-HAFETZ.