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10 Myths About Health Care Reform


8
If You Like Your Plan, You Can Keep Your Plan
U.S. President Barack Obama announced on Nov. 14, 2013 that canceled insurance plans could be renewed for a year. © Win McNamee/Getty Images
U.S. President Barack Obama announced on Nov. 14, 2013 that canceled insurance plans could be renewed for a year. © Win McNamee/Getty Images

That statement got the president into a bit of hot water when it turned out not to be entirely true. While nothing in the Affordable Care Act mandates that you choose a new health plan, some insurance companies opted to cancel plans that did not include coverage for services that are now mandatory under the law. So anyone whose plan was cancelled by their insurance company does have to switch.

There are no guarantees the health insurance company holding your policy won't discontinue or make changes to the plan you wanted to keep, and there's also no guarantee that your employer won't change or discontinue what benefits they offer or increase your contribution to the costs. But these were issues before health-care reform laws took effect in 2010, not necessarily because of new law's standards.

For the 5 percent of Americans who were insured through the individual market, this statement is a myth [source: Cohen]. The roughly 1 million Americans who in 2013 received letters from their private health insurance companies detailing the changes to or cancellation of their insurance policies, though, found out that the statement from the White House is not true. A small percentage of these plans will be modified to meet the minimum requirements of the Affordable Care Act, which may or may not come with a cost of coverage increase -- or the plan itself will be discontinued entirely [source: Cohen, Robertson].

In an effort to smooth the problem over, the president announced on Nov. 14, 2013 that plans that were cancelled could be extended for one year. That doesn't guarantee that companies will choose to extend those policies, though. As of this article's publication, the effectiveness of this new plan has yet to be determined.


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