HealthCare.gov Provides Tools for Understanding Health Care Options

July 7, 2010

Last month, Christine posted some resources for shopping for health insurance in light of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which institutes a number of changes in health insurance availability and coverage.

This month, one of the provisions of that Act was enacted to further aid in insurance shopping. The government is now offering a website where residents of any state can identify affordable health insurance coverage options in their state.

The website, HealthCare.gov, provides an online tool individuals and families can use to search for insurance and healthcare options. Under the “Find Insurance Options” section, you can put in information about your state, status (healthy individual, senior, young adult, etc.), age, and other non-personal details to find information about available plans in your area for individuals and families, including those considered “high risk” because they have a pre-existing health condition.

You can also find out if there are health care facilities near you that provide free or low-cost care.

The “Understand the New Law” section provides information on the Act and a timeline of when the various provisions will be implemented, and the “Information for You” section provides details specifically for families with children, individuals, people with disabilities, seniors, young adults, and employers.

The site also links to other federal sources of information, like Hospital Compare for healthcare quality data by hospital/location, and healthfinder for disease prevention information.

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