Medical Insurance Exchanges- What are they? « Health Insurance Advisory

Welcome to the New Healthcare Law Center and State News

new healthcare reform lawThe new healthcare law, called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), represents comprehensive healthcare reform legislation signed into law on March 23, 2010. It contains numerous provisions designed to protect consumers and promote low cost medical insurance, including many new taxes to pay for the cost.

In this section of the site, you can also obtain the following information specific to your state: available medical insurance options, efforts to regulate medical insurance premiums, healthcare, the individual medical insurance marketplace and the new healthcare law.

Our objective is to help Americans make sense of the new healthcare law by explaining key provisions in plain English and assisting individuals, families and the self-employed in using this information to find and secure affordable medical insurance.

Medical Insurance Exchanges- What are they?

Author: Administrator | Jul 01 2011 | Insurance Exchanges - New Healthcare Law

The new healthcare law calls for the creation of health insurance “exchanges.” This is a new entity intended to create a more organized and competitive market for health insurance by offering consumers a choice of affordable medical insurance plans, establishing common rules and pricing for medical insurance, and providing standardized information to help consumers better understand the choices available to them.

Health insurance exchanges are key to providing the uninsured with access to medical insurance coverage and facilitating changes to the individual medical insurance marketplace.  Their purpose and function include:

  1. Offering consumers a choice of medical insurance plans and focusing competition on price – covered services and cost sharing (i.e., deductibles, coinsurance or copayments, and out-of-pocket limits) are organized and presented in ways that make comparison shopping across medical insurance plans easier for consumers.
  2. Giving information to consumers – in conjunction with offering a choice of medical insurance plans, an exchange is intended to provide consumers with transparent information about health insurance plan provisions, such as premium costs and covered benefits, including each medical insurance plan’s performance in encouraging wellness, managing chronic illnesses, and improving consumer satisfaction.
  3. Providing customer service – exchanges also serve a customer service function, assisting consumers who encounter billing or access problems with their medical insurance plan.
  4. Creating an administrative mechanism for enrollment – health insurance exchanges will determine eligibility for and administer and apply income-related subsidies.

In January 2014, health insurance exchanges will also significantly change how health insurance companies sell individual medical insurance coverage. In most states today, adults age 19 and older buying medical insurance coverage in the individual market (non-group or employer sponsored) can be denied coverage based on their health status. Beginning in January 2014, individual medical insurance plans are prohibited from medically underwriting applicants. As a result, individuals cannot be declined and pre existing medical conditions must be covered.

Individuals, families and the self employed searching for a major medical insurance plan at will realize a very similar shopping experience as the health insurance exchanges.  Our online medical insurance quotes can be sorted and organized by price, health insurance company, deductible, etc. to make comparison shopping much easier. Enrollment is even handled online too!

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