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  How will the Affordable Care Act <Obamacare> affect me??????

This is the first in a series of articles written to answer the above question for:

  • Businesses Renew Early To Prepare For The Affordable Care Act
  • Individuals carrying medical coverage on their own, or not.
  • Employees of companies on group medical plans, or not.
  • Owners of companies offering group medical benefits, or not.
  • New choices in healthcare benefits starting on 01/01/2014
  • New costs for healthcare benefits, some already started
  • What I believe the effects of all this will be
  • Where these changes will most likely take us.

  •   Obamacare Act - Most people with individual health insurance policies will lose them December 31, 2013

    September 9, 2013 - The Affordable Care Act (obamacare) is here right now.

    All individual medical plans purchased after March 21, 2010 will terminate 12/31/13 because they are not grandfathered by the affordable care act. All plans purchased before 3/21/2010 where changes were made will also terminate 12/31/2013. On January 1, 2014 these plans will be replaced with new plans written under the affordable care act (ACA).

    On October 1 2013, the Maryland health exchange opens for business so that individuals with medium and lower incomes will be able to buy health insurance at a discount with an effective date of 1/1/2014. All preexisting conditions will be covered and there will be a choice of at least four different plans. The four plans are:

    1)   The bronze plan - which pays 60% of medical expenses will be the least expensive plan
    2)   The silver plan pays 70% of medical expenses
    3)   The gold plan pays 80% of medical expenses
    4)   The platinum pays 90% of medical expenses and therefore will be the most expensive plan
    5)   In addition there will be a catastrophic plan available for people under the age of 30. This plan will have a high deductible and be very inexpensive.


    Businesses - as of September 2013 - Maryland small businesses are required to give written notice to all their employees letting them know that the Maryland Health Insurance Exchange will be open October 1, 2013 and they may be eligible for a health insurance discount(rebate) starting this coming January 1, 2014. Many businesses are renewing their group plans early 12/1/13 to delay dealing with the affordable care act until 12/1/14. This gives them not only time to plan for this major change but gets them away from the initial impact of this major change, In other words it will take at least six months to smooth out the initial enrollment issues.
    Small business with fewer than 25 employees may be eligible for a health insurance rebate of up to 50% when their employee's have incomes of less than $25,000 and the employer pays 50% or more of their employee's health insurance coverage starting March 1, 2015.

    If you have questions about any or all of the above, please contact Ed Kafes at 410-484-2544.

      Individual Medical Insurance
      These products are available currently at reasonable cost because you have to be in relatively good heath to purchase them. They are available with various configurations such as deductibles, co-insurance, HMO's,PPO's, etc. from 5 or 6 different insurance companies. As of Jan. 1, 2014 there will be no health questions required to be insured under these plans, so it is expected that the rates will go up, however many people with moderate to low income will be eligible for a rebate from the Federal Government.
      The Maryland Health Insurance Plan is available to residents who have been turned down for health insurance and are not eligible for other health insurance plans or are being offered plans with restrictions for pre-existing conditions or offered plans with an extra cost to cover an existing problem. A number of options are available and there is a reduction in cost and deductible
      For those with a low household income. This plan is administered by Carefirst of Maryland and therefore Blue Choice and Blue Preferred doctors are in network for participants.
      Residents of Maryland have not had a problem covering pre-existing conditions for many years.
    Small group medical insurance in Maryland is available for Businesses with 2- 50 employees, covers all pre-existing conditions as of the plans effective dates & therefore the rates are higher than the cost of individual medical plans that require good health to obtain.
      5 different insurance companies offer these plans in many different configurations. Those plans in effect before 1-1 2014 will not have to be changed into Obamacare approved plans till their yearly renewal after 1-1 2014.
    Many small businesses are currently enrolling in partially self funded plans to save money and for some flexaibilty not available to fully insured plans under the coming Obamacare.
      The Affordable Care Act< Obamacare> becomes fully implemented this Jan 1st. individuals in Md. Will be able to purchase health plans through insurance professionals on the individual market and also through the Md. Health Insurance Exchange. Only through the Exchange will insurance rebates or tax credits be available. The Md Exchange is to become operational on 10-1-13 for plans effective 1-1 14 and will make it easier to compare plans and cost for same. There will be an open enrollment beginning this year on 10-01 2013 till 3-01 2014. This will be a yearly open enrollment & those residents that did not take advantage of this period will have to wait till the following Oct.1 with the exception of those with life changing events such as Cobra ending , divorce or death of a spouse, or birth of a child.
    The small business are of the exchange is to become operational on 1-1 14 for plans to become effective on 3-1-14.
    Click for the BBB Business Review of this Insurance Companies in Baltimore MD
      3635 Old Court Road | Baltimore, Maryland 21208 | 410-484-2544 | 1-800-345-2910