As the new Affordable Care Act takes effect in 2014, many Americans are worried that they just won’t be able to afford the required health insurance policy. Many fear that being forced to have health insurance (or having to pay a severe tax penalty) means they won’t be able to afford rent or groceries.
It’s important to understand that while it’s true you will have to purchase a health insurance plan, the cost won’t be nearly as high as you might expect. The ACA program has created different standards of health insurance, making it possible for everyone, including those struggling at the poverty level, to have at least some insurance that allows them to get basic health care.
All Marketplace insurance plan categories offer the same set of essential health benefits. Here’s a breakdown of each:
Note: The Marketplace also offers “catastrophic” plans to people under 30 years old and to some people with very low incomes. Learn more about catastrophic plans.