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The Obamacare plan: Can you financially not afford to sign up?

Work with your finances for a better health plan
Work with your finances for a better health plan
Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Do you understand Obamacare? The Affordable Care Act was signed by president Obama in March of 2010 and it wasn't until June of 2012 that the Supreme Court upheld the Act. During that time and ever since then, Obamacare is a household name. The main objective of this plan is so that more Americans will now have access to affordable and quality health insurance without health care spending increases. You may not politically agree with the plan or the makers behind it; don’t let your politics get in the way of providing healthcare for your family.

Many of you who never thought you could afford or get approved for health care now have a perfect opportunity to get it. It may be stressful, but it will be worth it if someone in your family falls ill or needs care.

The Affordable Care Act works to provide ten basic health care benefits. Individual plans will determine how much of each is covered. The plans must be comparable to what employers would offer. It is imperative that people look for insurance coverage to help them cover:

1. Outpatient care. Clinic or Outpatient surgeries are now covered. Many plans will cover home health services and hospice care while others will limit how long.

2. Emergency room visits. You will receive care no matter where you are at. You will not need to obtain prior approval to be covered.

3. Hospital care. Inpatient care from nurses and doctors, labs and tests, and your stay in the hospital is part of your health care package. Some plans may limit specific time limitations.

4. Care for pregnant moms and babies; before, during and after delivery health care for baby and mom.

5. Mental health conditions and addiction services. Patients will receive care for treatment, counseling and psychotherapy. Some plans may limit days covered.

6. Prescriptions. Doctor prescribed medicines for illness and conditions. This will not include over the counter medicine. Insurance companies may limit coverage for certain drugs. They may also limit coverage to generic versions or the least expensive brand.

7. Rehabilitation services and equipment. Rehabilitative (recover functions) and habilitative (develop functions) services and any device needed for each may have some limitations.

8. Lab services. It includes diagnosis testing and preventative services like breast exams.

9. Preventative services. Healthcare will cover physicals, immunizations, chronic conditions or to detect certain medical conditions.

10. Pediatric care (under 19 years of age). Includes physicals, immunizations dental and eye exams (corrective lenses coverage too).

The Health Insurance Marketplace will take enrollment applications until March 31, 2014. Without healthcare, you will be subject to a monthly penalty fee. Don’t let low-income be your excuse to not find a healthcare plan. The system may not be perfect right now, but it has opened the doors for many who did not have health plans before.Research your options to find an affordable health care plan.

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