Last week I attended a really informative forum titled Health Care Reform 2010: Transitioning Health Care for Oklahoma’s Children and Families. The forum included a presentation from Tricia Brooks of the Center for Children and Families at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute. During the presentation, the new reforms really started to make much more sense. I was able to finally filter out all of the opinions and politics and saw what the bill actually does. The presentation not only contained information on how children and families will be affected by the new reforms, but it also included a timeline for implementation of the various reforms. The timeline is a quick way to see the different reforms and when to expect them to be implemented. The reforms that will go into effect in 2010 include:
- States must maintain Medicaid/CHIP eligibility levels and enrollment procedures in effect on March 23, 2010 (until 2014, with some exceptions for adults and 2019 children)
- States can continue to expand eligibility or simplify enrollment in Medicaid and CHIP
- Small employers receive tax credits to purchase employee health care premiums
- States can provide CHIP to children eligible for coverage under a state employee health care plan (under certain conditions)
- By July 1, 2010, a temporary, high-risk pool is established for qualified uninsured personas with pre-existing conditions (in place until 2014)
- Seniors begin to receive rebates/discounts toward drug coverage (with elimination of the doughnut hole” by 2020)
- After September 23, 2010 (as a new health plan year begins):
Young adults can remain on their parents’ health plan until age 26
Children with insurance can no longer be denied coverage for pre-existing conditions
Insurance plans can no longer impose lifetime caps or restrictive annual limits on coverage, and cannot rescind coverage when a person becomes sick
New plans must provide free preventive service to all enrollees
These reforms are just the beginning though. Many more reforms will be implemented between 2011 and 2015. To see the complete timeline click here. For even more information about the new health reform measures click here.
Lastly, I would like to thank the Community Service Council, Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy, Oklahoma Policy Institute, Tulsa Area United Way, Greater THAN, and the OU School of Community Medicine for sponsoring such a great event. It is my understanding that there will be future forums to discuss the impact on seniors and the budget.