Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Health Insurance Reform - 2010 Timeline

Perhaps you are wondering how the new health insurance reform legislation will affect you. So are a lot of folks. In spite of a year plus of haggling, we are just as much in the dark as we were when the backroom deals were done.

Here is our best guesstimate of what to expect during 2010. Using a list provided by WJLA, here goes.

Sets up a high-risk health insurance pool to provide affordable coverage for uninsured people with medical problems.

This is a national high risk pool. We have no idea what kind of benefits will be provided or what the premiums will be.

Neither does the White House, Congress or CBO.

Starting six months after enactment, requires all health insurance plans to maintain dependent coverage for children until they turn 26; prohibits insurers from denying coverage to children because of pre-existing health problems.

Health insurance premiums for children, and family plans that include children, will rise. Rough guess would be a 50% increase for children's rates. Could be higher.

If mental health parity is included, double the rates for children.

Begins narrowing the Medicare prescription coverage gap by providing a $250 rebate to seniors in the gap, which starts this year once they have spent $2,830. It would be fully closed by 2020.

Look for an increase in PDP or Medicare Part D premiums. Initial increases will be nominal but will accelerate over the next few years as risk is shifted from the individual to the insurance carrier.

Reduces projected Medicare payments to hospitals, home health agencies, nursing homes, hospices and other providers.

Unless "doc fix" is passed, expect increased difficulty in finding a PCP that will accept new patients.

Imposes 10 percent sales tax on indoor tanning.

Pay more for tanning services. George Hamilton will not be pleased.
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