FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, September 20, 2010
CONTACT: MARA LEE
Passed as Part of the Affordable Care Act, Bill of Rights Includes Number of Consumer Protections
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congresswoman Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento) applauded key consumer protections in the Affordable Care Act that go into effect this Thursday, September 23rd, exactly six months after the act was signed into law.
“After years of working to establish a comprehensive Patient’s Bill of Rights, these critical consumer protections will now be in place for all Americans,” commented Congresswoman Matsui. “American families are already seeing the benefits of the health care law. And now, no longer will children be denied based on pre-existing conditions, or an individual’s coverage cancelled when they need it most.”
The Patient’s Bill of Rights includes many popular provisions. Beginning on September 23, adult children up to age 26 will be able to stay on their parents’ policies at the same level of coverage and same price as younger children. Insurers will be prohibited from denying coverage to children based on pre-existing conditions, or from cancelling coverage once an enrollee is covered. Restrictions will be placed on annual limits for coverage, which will be a lifeline to very ill patients, until they are prohibited all together in 2014. Additionally, the new required coverage of recommended preventive care and immunizations will begin on September 23, providing millions of Americans with access to preventive medicine and saving billions of dollars as a result.
“These protections will put power back into the hands of the consumer, and ensure that every family is getting the coverage they deserve,” added Rep. Matsui. “I look forward to seeing the positive results of these new provisions in my hometown of Sacramento, and all across the nation, and know that this brings us one step closer to providing affordable health coverage to everyone.”
These protections will affect health care plans beginning on or after September 23, 2010, meaning many consumers will see changes on January 1st when their new health plan year begins. For more information on health care reform and your health insurance choices, please visit www.matsui.house.gov/healthcare.