Even in traditionally conservative Utah, many residents say they have found health reform beneficial.
Thursday, President Obama gave Utah his seal of approval, noting its efforts in making its exchange more in line with what’s envisaged by health care law – including expanding call center capacity and hiring more consumer assistance staffers.
What is Obamacare?
The Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as Obamacare, has had an outsized influence on American purchasing practices for healthcare insurance.
The Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, mandates that Americans either possess health insurance or pay a tax penalty. Furthermore, it expanded Medicaid eligibility and created the health insurance marketplace so Americans could shop around and compare different policies more easily. Furthermore, certain exclusions and restrictions were banned and it made illegal for insurers to deny coverage to individuals with preexisting conditions.
As part of its Affordable Care Act requirements, most plans must cover preventive healthcare free of charge while limiting out-of-pocket expenses such as copays and deductibles. Furthermore, adults under 26 can remain on their parent’s plan until 26 and prescription drug costs become more manageable. Overall, marketplace enrollment reached record levels in 2022 across private coverage, Medicare enrollment and Medicaid/CHIP enrollment categories.
How Does Obamacare Work?
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was intended to make healthcare more affordable for people with lower incomes. Plans offered through the marketplace must offer certain benefits and cover preexisting conditions; additionally, individuals can apply for federal subsidies, known as tax credits, to help pay their monthly premiums.
To take advantage of these benefits, individuals must sign up for private health insurance through either a state exchange or federal marketplace. There may also be incentives from the government encouraging this action such as reduced premiums and deductibles.
Utah and some other states, like Idaho and Wisconsin, have chosen not to expand their Medicaid programs, leading to an increase in individuals relying on the marketplace for coverage. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), large employers must offer health insurance to full-time employees at no cost; consumer protections were also put into effect prior to its implementation; otherwise consumers could be denied coverage or treatment due to preexisting conditions without recourse for appealing insurance company decisions.
How Does the ACA Work in Utah?
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) offers assistance with health insurance costs through cost-sharing reductions and advance premium tax credits, available to people who purchase Marketplace plans or Medicare. Individuals can enroll during Open Enrollment from November 1 – December 15, or take advantage of Special Enrollment Periods should a qualifying life event such as marriage, moving states, having a baby or losing other coverage occur.
Utah residents can quickly determine whether they qualify for Obamacare health plans by entering their zipcode at the top of this page and entering it here. You can then compare plans and choose what is best suited to them.
Marketplace plans offer access to affordable health coverage for many, while others can afford care through employer-provided group or short term plans. But should the Affordable Care Act (ACA) be repealed, those individuals could lose their insurance and incur higher costs for prescription drugs and maternity services.
How Can I Get Affordable Health Insurance in Utah?
Utahans with low incomes could qualify for free or low-cost individual and family health insurance coverage through the state marketplace. All plans offered on the marketplace must comply with Affordable Care Act guidelines, covering ten essential benefits. Detailed plan documents are also provided so you can see exactly how much each plan costs as well as any extras like durable medical equipment or outpatient mental health counseling costs that might apply.
If your income falls within 400% of the poverty level, you are eligible for a subsidy that reduces the premium costs for Silver health plans in Utah, which currently average $558 monthly on average.
Bronze plans tend to be the least costly option, yet may come with higher annual deductibles and copayments than their Gold counterparts. If you suffer from chronic conditions, Gold plans could offer lower out-of-pocket expenses; private health insurers also offer plans not available through Utah marketplace.