How to Navigate Obamacare in North Carolina

How to Navigate Obamacare in North Carolina

obamacare north carolina

Many North Carolina residents are uncertain how to navigate Obamacare, the healthcare reform program. This article will answer some of the frequently asked questions regarding this healthcare system reform initiative.

As part of the Affordable Care Act’s open enrollment period, you can purchase an Affordable Care Act-compliant health insurance policy. It will offer coverage for ambulatory patient services, emergency services, maternity, pediatric (including dental & vision coverage), rehabilitative services & devices, mental health & substance use disorder treatment as well as preventive medicine like chronic disease management plus hospitalization costs along with prescription drugs and laboratory services.

Health Insurance

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) makes health insurance more accessible. Employers are required to offer health plans to fulltime employees and government subsidies are available to cover some of their cost.

Individuals whose household income falls between 100-400 times the federal poverty level may qualify for a subsidy to help cover their premium payments. Subsidies are also available to people who must buy insurance on their own due to not finding coverage through an employer plan that fits.

Plans are organized into tiers to reflect various levels of coverage and monthly costs. Higher-tier plans tend to offer lower deductibles, copays and coinsurance payments that help you cover less of your medical costs upfront.


Subsidies for health insurance coverage are provided by the federal government to make coverage more cost-effective for those who qualify based on income and household size. These subsidies may help make coverage more manageable – these subsidies may apply depending on an applicant’s household income and size, for instance.

There are two primary forms of subsidies, premium tax credits and cost sharing reductions. Premium tax credits help lower monthly premiums of Marketplace plans while cost sharing reductions reduce cost sharing amounts.

Cost sharing reductions aim to minimize out-of-pocket health care expenses such as deductibles, copayments and coinsurance that many covered services charge for.

Most Affordable Care Act (ACA) enrollees qualify for financial assistance, with amounts depending on household income and size. In 2021, changes were implemented by the ACA that extended eligibility for premium subsidies up to 400% of federal poverty line.


People without health insurance may be eligible to enroll during Open Enrollment, which runs from November 1 to December 15. You could also qualify for special enrollment periods when experiencing a Qualifying Life Event.

Obamacare initially caused controversy, yet it has slowly gained acceptance since its implementation – much like how social security and Medicare were initially opposed but eventually came to be seen as necessities.

North Carolina ranks first nationally for Marketplace enrollees receiving subsidies or premium tax credits to offset their coverage costs, receiving an average of $607 annually as opposed to $491 nationally.

Pre-Existing Conditions

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) prohibits health insurers from denying coverage or charging higher premiums to people with preexisting conditions, while also setting caps on how much insurers can charge based on age, gender or tobacco use.

Even though the Affordable Care Act offers protections, many North Carolinians have never signed up for an ACA-compliant plan due to not knowing they qualify for subsidies, or not having a plan which offers similar benefits as an ACA-compliant one.

The NC Navigator Consortium is a network of federally qualified health insurance navigators that assist North Carolinians in enrolling in Affordable Care Act compliant plans. Their navigators connect consumers to plans that offer essential health benefits like mental health, emergency care and maternity coverage.

Age Limits

Prior to 2009, young adults would often be disenrolled from their parents’ health insurance plans when they reached a certain age or stopped attending full time after turning 19.

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), most states extended dependent coverage under parent or guardian health plans up until age 26 for children who were still dependent. This provision allowed millions of young Americans to continue receiving health care coverage through their parent plans.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandates that plans in both the individual market and most employer-based plans (small group and large group plans, including self-funded or so-called ERISA plans) provide dependent coverage to children until they turn 26 regardless of financial dependency, residence of parent/guardian, student status, employment status or marital status of dependent. This coverage must remain until dependent reaches 26th birthday.

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About the Author: Raymond Donovan