Uninsured rates continue to reach historical lows under the Affordable Care Act. Gallup reported that in the first quarter of 2016, the uninsured rate among U.S. adults reached 11 percent.
Continue Reading: Who are the Remaining Uninsured Americans?
Some Americans are legally skipping out on Obamacare in favor of a different kind of coverage – coverage they share with like-minded individuals. Recently, we wrote about the growing popularity of healthcare sharing ministries and the fact that members of eligible HCSMs may qualify for exemptions from the Affordable Care Act’s individual shared responsibility provision.
Continue Reading: How Healthcare Sharing Ministries Work
Continue Reading: An Obamacare Mistake the Government Wants You to Ignore
Affordable Care Act health insurance subsidies help lower premiums and out-of-pocket expenses for many people. The Department of Health and Human Services reported that about 85 percent of the 11.1 million people with active Marketplace coverage (i.e., those who bought health insurance from state-based or federally facilitated exchanges) as of March 31, 2016, were receiving an advance premium tax credit. The average amount of this subsidy was $291 per month.
Continue Reading: Don’t Make These Obamacare Tax Mistakes
In record numbers, a portion of the population is foregoing Obamacare plans for a type of healthcare coverage that is not state-regulated (it’s not even considered insurance) and generally allows them to avoid the ACA tax penalty. Enrollment in faith-based healthcare ministries, also known as healthcare sharing ministries, has more than doubled since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010 – jumping from about 200,000 to 500,000 members nationwide.
Continue Reading: Is Faith-Based Healthcare Coverage Accepted Under the ACA?
In 2015, a trio of reports showed that consumers struggle to understand health insurance—and that lack of understanding results in selecting the wrong plan, spending money unnecessarily, and encountering billing surprises after receiving medical care.
While flu season may peak between September and February, it typically runs from October through May.1 That means it’s time to start thinking about a flu shot.
The CDC recommends that people get their flu shots as soon as the vaccine becomes available—typically in October.2 It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop and provide protection.
Not only is getting your annual flu vaccination a way to help protect you and others from certain flu viruses, it is also a way to take advantage of your Obamacare health insurance benefits.
Influenza immunization vaccines (i.e., flu shots) are among the preventive services covered at no extra cost under the Affordable Care Act —ACA-qualified health plans include certain shots and screenings that cost you nothing beyond your monthly premium.3 These Obamacare benefits apply to children and adults.4,5
Check with your health insurance plan to verify it will pay for flu vaccines. While major medical health insurance plans sold on and away from the Health Insurance Marketplace are required to include certain free preventive services, such as flu shots, other health plans may not. For instance, grandfathered health plans are not required to do so.6 When in doubt, call your carrier’s member services department to confirm your health benefits.
If your family does not have health insurance or has health insurance that does not cover flu shots, there are programs for uninsured or underinsured children. You can also check with your state health department for free- or low-cost flu shot resources and look for free flu shot offerings in your area. Comparison shopping can also help you get the best rate; call around to different pharmacies and grocery stores that offer flu shots to see what they charge.
Visit vaccines.gov to locate flu shots near you, and click on your state for immunization information in your area.
Originally published October 6, 2016.
1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “What You Should Know for the 2015-2016 Influenza Season.” Last updated Aug. 25, 2015. http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2015-2016.htm
3 HealthCare.gov. “Preventive Health Services for Adults.” https://www.healthcare.gov/preventive-care-benefits/adults/
5 HealthCare.gov. “Preventive Health Services for Children.” https://www.healthcare.gov/preventive-care-benefits/children/
6 HealthCare.gov. “Grandfathered Health Insurance Plans.” https://www.healthcare.gov/health-care-law-protections/grandfathered-plans/
About The IHC Group
Independence Holding Company (NYSE: IHC) is a holding company that is principally engaged in underwriting, administering and/or distributing group and individual disability, specialty and supplemental health, pet, and life insurance through its subsidiaries since 1980. The IHC Group owns three insurance companies (Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York, Madison National Life Insurance Company, Inc. and Independence American Insurance Company) and IHC Specialty Benefits, Inc., which is a technology-driven insurance sales and marketing company that creates value for insurance producers, carriers and consumers (both individuals and small businesses) through a suite of proprietary tools and products (including ACA plans and small group medical stop-loss). All products are placed with highly rated carriers.
IHC Specialty Benefits, Inc.
IHC Specialty Benefits, Inc., doing business as Health eDeals Insurance Solutions is a full-service marketing and distribution company that focuses on small employer, individual and consumer products. Health eDeals markets products via general agents online, telebrokerage, advisor centers, private label and directly to consumers. For more information about Health eDeals visit http://www.HealtheDeals.com.
Continue Reading: Does My Health Insurance Pay for Flu Shots?
Healthcare never made the conversation in last night’s presidential debate. The closest we got to the topic was Donald Trump alluding to the fact that he didn’t pay federal income tax.
Continue Reading: If Donald Trump Doesn’t Pay Taxes, Does He Qualify for Medicaid?
As 2017 approaches, the Affordable Care Act’s individual shared responsibility provision will enter its fourth year of enforcement. Commonly referred to as the individual mandate, the shared responsibility provision requires that most Americans to do one of the following:
Continue Reading: What is the 2017 Obamacare Penalty?
While some may speculate about the success and viability of the Affordable Care Act, one thing is certain: The nation’s uninsured rate continues to decrease since its implementation. The U.S. Census Bureau on Sept. 13 released its annual report on health insurance coverage in the United States, and findings show that between 2014 and 2015, the uninsured rate dropped 1.3 percentage points. In 2015, the percentage of people with health insurance coverage for all or part of the year was 90.9 percent.
Continue Reading: Hispanics Remain Largest Uninsured Population Under Obamacare