Many Americans will feel the effect of health reform this year, as significant changes start to go into effect. During 2010:
- Children will not be denied coverage due to a preexisting condition.
- Young adults will be able to stay on their parents' health plans to age 26.
- Insurance companies will be prohibited from revoking coverage when people become ill, and from setting lifetime limits on benefits.
- Small businesses will be eligible for new tax credits to offset their premium costs.
- People with preexisting conditions will be eligible for subsidized coverage through a national, high-risk pool.
- New limits will be set for the percent of premiums that insurers can spend on nonmedical costs, e.g., administrative or profit, and, beginning in 2011, carriers that exceed those limits will be required to offer rebates to enrollees.
- Medicare will provide $250 rebates to beneficiaries to help with prescription drug costs (with greater help coming in future years).
- Medicare will eliminate cost-sharing for preventive services in Medicare and private plans so they are free.