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Health Insurance Reform: What's In It For You?

At 11:55 this morning in Raleigh, North Carolina, the President will be holding a town hall on health insurance reform and will hone in on 8 core insurance consumer protections that help define how this legislation will affect you directly. You can listen to audio of the town hall here once it starts, or most likely catch some of it on cable news, but in the meantime we have distilled those protections into a single, simple page for you. Thinking through the stories of frustration, anxiety, and even tragedy that you have lived and heard about regarding health insurance, you'll find that these new fundamental protections provide a profound change in how Americans experience health care.
As the President says in the email below that he sent to White House subscribers this morning, the misinformation will be flying fast and furious over the next month, so it is important to put this stake in the ground telling people what reform is really about. A friend, a family member, or a contact might forward you some anonymous email making ridiculous claims about this or that provision – you can forward this information to them first so they know what is real and what is fake. Read the President's email below and send our page to your friends and family via email, Twitter, Facebook or whatever other methods you can think of. (Sign up for future White House emails here.)
Good Morning,
If you’re like most Americans, there’s nothing more important to you about health care than peace of mind.
Given the status quo, that’s understandable. The current system often denies insurance due to pre-existing conditions, charges steep out-of-pocket fees – and sometimes isn’t there at all if you become seriously ill.
It’s time to fix our unsustainable insurance system and create a new foundation for health care security. That means guaranteeing your health care security and stability with eight basic consumer protections:
  • No discrimination for pre-existing conditions
  • No exorbitant out-of-pocket expenses, deductibles or co-pays
  • No cost-sharing for preventive care
  • No dropping of coverage if you become seriously ill
  • No gender discrimination
  • No annual or lifetime caps on coverage
  • Extended coverage for young adults
  • Guaranteed insurance renewal so long as premiums are paid
Over the next month there is going to be an avalanche of misinformation and scare tactics from those seeking to perpetuate the status quo. But we know the cost of doing nothing is too high. Health care costs will double over the next decade, millions more will become uninsured, and state and local governments will go bankrupt.
It’s time to act and reform health insurance, drive down costs and guarantee the health care security and stability of every American family. You can help by putting these core principles of reform in the hands of your friends, your family, and the rest of your social network.
Thank you,
Barack Obama