Under the Health Care Reform, all non-grandfathered health plans are now required to provide preventative care services for each policy. The extent of the coverage has been modified since its introduction in 2010, but the final regulation was introduced in February of 2012. One of the main advantages of these changes is the fact that preventative care coverage comes without cost share so you are not required to pay a deductible or to make copayments when you use one of the services that is included in your health plan. As a direct result of these changes, the cost of premiums will increase as there will be a need for more premiums in order to pay for the extra costs. Even so, there will be many services that will fall under the “Preventative Care” category.
- immunizations recommended by the CDC (flu shots, chicken pox, Hepatitis A and B, tetanus);
- services with an A or B rating recommended by the US Preventive Services Task Force (alcohol misuse counseling, nutrition, obesity screening)
- preventive care and screenings for babies, children and teens (autism, congenital hypothyroidism, hearing, sickle cell)
- preventive care and screenings for women (mammograms, cervical dysplasia, osteoporosis, STD counseling)
The last entry contains many services, including contraceptive services that are provided by all Health Insurance Plans. The final regulation pertaining to the healthcare reform states that religious employers can be exempted from offering this coverage if it goes against their religious values. However, there are strict criteria that define what constitutes a religious employer and among them is the necessity for the organization to employ and to serve primarily people that share their religious tenets.
Women Benefit in Preventive Care
Even so, women will definitely benefit from better services as a result of their new coverage. These can include STI screenings, generic birth controls, well-woman visits, pregnancy screenings and mammograms for women over 40. As long as they use an in-network doctor or have prescriptions for their drugs, they can get medications, services and even certain kinds of counseling free of charge without the need for copayments or coinsurance. However, cost sharing may occur for women that use an out-of-network service provider.
Preventative care seeks to offer support for all groups of people.
There will be special services that are targeted specifically at sections based on age (infants, teens) or gender (pregnant women) and each plan has its own features and limits. You can find out more detailed information about the healthcare plans (click on Picture).
Health Insurance Subsidies
Furthermore, besides the free services provided in many situations, you can also be eligible for a subsidy if your income is in a low bracket. You can find out exactly how large a subsidy you might be entitled to by using the calculator available here.