The Heath Reform Law by the Numbers: One Year Later

For Immediate Release:

March 22, 2011

One year ago this week, President Obama signed the landmark health care reform bill into law. And now, American families are benefitting from new patient protections and greater freedoms. It is freeing children with pre-existing conditions and pregnant woman from discrimination by insurers. Young people have the freedom to stay on their parents’ insurance plan until the age of 26. And seniors have more freedom to get the prescription drugs and preventative care they need.

One year later, the Affordable Care Act is already helping American families with health care costs and saving taxpayers money:

  • $250 million: The approximate amount provided to states by HHS to strengthen their ability to review, revise or reject unreasonable premium rate hikes.
  • Over 3.5 million: Seniors provided with checks to help cover the cost of prescription drugs.
  • Over $4 billion: Recovered in Medicare fraud using new tools put in place by the law.
  • 80 percent: The minimum amount of each premium dollar insurance companies must spend on health care benefits instead of overhead, executive salaries or marketing, as mandated by the law.

But if Republicans had their way, they would repeal the new patient protections in the law, put insurance companies back in control and it would lead to a different set of numbers:

  • 1.2 million young adults would lose their insurance coverage through their parents’ health plans
  • 4 million small businesses would lose access to $40 billion in tax credits, designed to help make health insurance more affordable for employees
  • Over 44 million seniors with Medicare coverage could see cost increases for important preventative care measures and may lose access to free annual checkups
  • Nearly 4 million seniors would once again see their costs go up in the Medicare prescription drug “donut hole,” losing access to immediate 50% drug discounts that grow over time until the donut hole closes
  • Up to 15 million Americans would be at risk of losing their insurance when they unexpectedly become sick or are in an accident, because of a simple mistake on an application
  • 165 million people with private insurance coverage would find themselves vulnerable to lifetime limits placed on how much insurance companies will spend on their health care
  • 5,400 employers would not receive the financial relief assistance that helps them continue providing health benefits to early retirees and their families

While Republicans want to take away the new freedoms Americans have won through health care reform, they have no new plan of their own to rein in costs and protect patients. Democrats remain committed to fighting for middle class families and small businesses, while Republicans want to take us back to the days when insurance companies were in charge.  

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