Last week it was reported that more than 540,000 people selected health insurance through the HealthCare.gov platform and even more people signed up through the state-based marketplaces in the first week of open enrollment. It is likely that the increase in "The Penalty" for not having coverage, which will be $695 per person, plays a substantial role in those numbers.
For many, evaluating health care coverage options is a really big decision, as it affects both health choices and finances, but with the right information and tools at hand, the process of signing up for and later reporting health care coverage on tax returns is simpler than ever. Here are some important things to know.
Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law, more than 15 million Americans have received some type of health coverage. This open enrollment period alone has seen almost 7 million new sign-ups. Still, there are many more to reach, especially in the Latino community, where one in four remains uninsured.
The federal government was not up for the task of building and overseeing a complicated e-commerce business with a significant data management back-end -- any more than it has ever been up for building the military's fighter jets, running commercial airports, or administering the actual Medicare program.
The harms inflicted by discrimination reveal themselves in our bodies as we age -- as people of color, as poor and low-income people, and as LGBT people. The symptoms manifest as higher rates of high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, depression, social isolation and more.