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Obamacare Health Insurance Marketplace

Understanding Obamacare, known as Affordable Care Act (ACA)

Doctor talking to patient about health insurance with medicine and pills on the side

Obamacare, also known as Affordable Care Act (ACA), is a landmark health care bill that was signed into law on March 23, 2010, with the objective of providing access to affordable, quality healthcare for all Americans.

What is Obamacare?

Obamacare created the health marketplace, also known as Health Insurance Exchanges, to help uninsured people find health insurance coverage. Consumers meeting defined income requirements may be able to receive federal subsidies in the form of premium tax credits to make the coverage more affordable. However, under this legislation, you can only get financial help from the government if you buy coverage through a Marketplace.

This health care reform provides new rights, benefits, and protections, in addition to establishing a Health Marketplace where Americans can purchase federally regulated and subsidized health policies.

Depending on which state you live in, you may find a plan through the federal government’s portal or your state may have its own portal.

Navigating through the different types of health insurance through a marketplace or health exchange can be confusing. At Freeway, we have skilled, bilingual agents who can help you make sense of it all and find affordable healthcare.

Is Obamacare Free?

No. These policies are designed to make it easier for Americans to have a health plan they can afford. Many people can find healthcare through a marketplace they can afford, especially with tax credits for those who qualify.

Most states and the federal government offer a variety of subsidized healthcare that provides very low or no-cost healthcare for those who meet income guidelines.

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Can I Get a Health Plan Through the Government?

Yes. Almost every American resident is eligible to sign up for healthcare under Obamacare. The foundation of this policy is that all Americans have access to healthcare they can afford. Those who meet certain income guidelines are typically able to receive help paying for their coverage through federal tax benefits. Others who make more than a certain threshold (400>federal poverty level) can buy a policy through the government, but may not receive help paying for it.

Doctor getting information about health from a female patient and her partner

Facts about Open Enrollment and Special Enrollment

There are two periods during which people can sign up for ACA health. Open enrollment is a period when everybody who wants to sign up for healthcare through a marketplace is able to do so. Special enrollment follows open enrollment and is only available for people with a qualifying life event, such as a career change that resulted in a loss of an employer-sponsored health plan.

States who administer their own marketplaces have differing times for open enrollment. People who live in states that do not administer their own exchange sign up through the federal government marketplace, which has open enrollment from Nov. 1 through Jan. 15.

What Are the Benefits?

Many more Americans now have health coverage than before. Part of that is due to how these laws changed the health industry so that more people can afford to buy a policy. Some other benefits include:

  • People can no longer be denied a health plan or charged more for it due to pre-existing conditions.
  • More screenings and preventive services are available – many with low to no co-pay.
  • Prescriptions are less expensive.

What Are Some of the Problems with the ACA?

It continues to be a heated point across political aisles. The healthcare act could – and will – undergo continuous changes as presidential administrations come and go. Some people claim these regulations have cost jobs as employers have cut hours to avoid the mandate that employers with 50 or more fulltime workers must offer coverage. Other issues include:

  • Some people are seeing higher health costs from insurers who are now forced to cover items they didn’t have to in the past.
  • Some states still have fines in place for people who do not have health coverage (the health mandate that is no longer in effect on the federal level).

Obamacare Health Insurance by the Numbers

A record 35 million U.S. residents have accessed healthcare through programs including health marketplaces, Medicaid expansion and the Basic Health Plan in participating states. Other impressive stats include:

  • 13.8 million people purchased individual plans in the Health Marketplace in 2022. Of that, 7.7 million enrolled through states that use and 4 million people enrolled through states that use their own platform or portal.
  • From its inception to 2021, 31 million Americans have found health coverage through the ACA. All 50 states have seen decreases in the number of uninsured residents since the implementation of the ACA.

Get Affordable Health Coverage Online Today

Freeway agents are bilingual and experienced in helping people find their way through the health insurance maze. Freeway has partnered with many health carriers to help customers find affordable health plans at low or no cost. And, as always, Freeway’s services and your health care quotes are 100% free! Give us a call today at 800-777-5620 or visit us at one of our many convenient locations.

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