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The Affordable Care Act Is Already a Success

The Affordable Care Act Is Already a Success

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While the Affordable Care Act's provisions will continue to be implemented through 2016, its reforms are already benefiting millions of Americans in important ways.
While the Affordable Care Act's provisions will continue to be implemented through 2016, its reforms are already benefiting millions of Americans in important ways.

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Published by: Center for American Progress on Jan 12, 2012
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1Center or American Progress |  The Aordable Care Act Is Already a Success
 The Affordable Care Act Is Already a Success
It’s Lowering Costs and Expanding Coverage for Millions
January 2012
Te Patient Protection and Aordable Care Act became law on March 23, 2010, beginning a series o important,sweeping reorms to the health care system that will expand coverage, control health care costs, and improve thehealth care delivery system. While the act’s provisions will continue to be implemented through 2016, its reormsare already beneting millions o Americans in important ways.Tanks to the Aordable Care Act:
Millions of Americans are getting the coverage they need
2.5 million young adults gained health insurance.
 Tis is a strong example o the coverage gainsor millions o people the Aordable Care Actis projected to provide. Te Aordable Care Act allows young adults to stay on their parents’insurance plans until age 26.
More than 40,000 Americans with pre-existing medicalconditions gained aordable coverage through theederally administered Pre-Existing Condition InsurancePlan.
Tose with pre-existing conditions, such ascancer or chronic disease, can access insurance tomeet their health needs through the plan.
The Department o Health and Human Servicesawarded more than $14 million to school-based healthcenters across the country, increasing the number o children served by 50 percent.
Te Aordable Care Act provides a total o $200 million or school-basedhealth centers, which provide primary care, dentalhealth, mental health, substance-abuse counseling,and health and nutrition counseling.
Across the country, 350 new community healthcenters were built and nearly 19,000 new jobswere created in 2011 alone to provide criticalhealth care to the 50 million Americans livingin medically underserved areas.
Te AordableCare Act provides a total o $11 billion to sup-port and expand community health centersnationwide.
Consumers are enjoying greater protectionrom unreasonable private-insurance premiumhikes.
Te Aordable Care Act helped 42 states,the District o Columbia and ve U.S. territo-ries strengthen their rate-review laws, bring-ing greater transparency and accountability toprivate insurance rate increases. For example,Connecticut rejected a 20% rate hike by insurers,and Oregon halved the rate increase by one o its largest insurers, saving money or more than60,000 people, and the Department o Healthand Human Services recently deemed increasesin ve states “unreasonable.”
2Center or American Progress |  The Aordable Care Act Is Already a Success
Care is becoming more affordable
More than 2 million seniors saved more than $1.2billion on prescription drugs—an average o $550per person—in 2011.
Te Aordable Care Act is working to ulll its promise o closing the MedicarePart D prescription drug coverage gap, also known asthe “donut hole.” Tanks to the Aordable Care Act,seniors and persons with disabilities receive a dis-count on covered brand-name prescription drugs i they’re in the donut hole. Te discount will increaseover time until the gap is closed in 2020.
Seniors enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans sawtheir monthly premiums decrease 14 percent rom2010 to 2011.
Tis drop reects the Aordable Care Act’s commitment to giving seniors choices or qual-ity, aordable care.
More than 22.6 million seniors and people withdisabilities accessed no-cost-sharing preventiveservices in 2011 alone.
Te Aordable Care Actmakes preventive care aordable and accessible by eliminating cost sharing and requiring new healthplans to cover preventive services such as importanthealth screenings and immunizations.
Millions o women are taking advantage o no-cost-sharing preventive health services in 2011, andthey will be able to access more comprehensivewomen’s preventive care beginning August 2012.
Te Aordable Care Act ensures that importantpreventive services, including mammograms andcervical cancer screenings, are provided ree o cost to women.
Through joint eorts by the Department o Healthand Human Services and the Department o Justice,nearly $3 billion in raudulent claims was halted in2011 alone.
Tese eorts ensure public unds areused appropriately, and strengthen programs likeMedicare and Medicaid.
 The quality of health care is improving
$1.75 billion in government unding will expand theprimary care workorce by 16,000 providers over thenext fve years.
Tis boost in unding will increaseaccess to preventive care, lower health care costs,and increase the quality o care or millions o patients. Early investments are already paying o:Te National Health Services Corps, which providesprimary care in underserved communities, nearly tripled in the last three years.
Thirty-two leading health care organizations acrossthe country are participating in an initiative to providebetter, more coordinated care to Medicare patients,with potential savings o $1.1 billion.
Te Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations initiative rewardscare providers or improving the health o Medicarepatients and lowering costs through coordination.
Preventable hospital-acquired conditions and pre-ventable readmissions will be reduced by 40 percentand 20 percent, respectively, by 2013 through the“Partnership or Patients: Better Care, Lower Costs”public-private initiative.
Te Partnership orPatients brings together leaders o major hospitals,employers, physicians, nurses, and patient advo-cates along with state and ederal governments ina shared eort to make hospital care saer, morereliable, and less costly.
Ten thousand Medicare patients with chronic conditionswill have access to home care services at lower costsunder the Independence at Home Demonstration.
 Under the program, certain Medicare patients will beable to receive home care services (home instead o ina doctor’s ofce) at lower costs.
The bottom line:
Benets to health care consumers o all ages are evident and will continue to grow.

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