Saturday, January 29, 2011

PPACA Phase-ins

Numerous PPACA changes became effective for insurance plan years starting after 9/23/10 (for most patients this would be a plan year beginning January 1). Many changes are related to insurance coverage, including:

  • coverage extends to dependents up to age 26
  • certain preventive and immunization services will be covered with no patient cost sharing
  • lifetime dollar limits will be removed from benefit plans
  • pre-existing condition exclusions and waiting periods are eliminated for patients under 19 (older patients phase in later)
  • retroactive cancellation will be only in cases of fraud or failure to pay

Other changes:

  • increases in penalties for misusing health savings account funds
  • changes in flexible savings accounts (FSAs)

Much of this will increase insurance premiums in the short run, and employers are passing much of the cost down the ladders to employees.

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