Two years ago today, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act, giving hardworking, middle-class families the health care security they deserve. Health reform requires that insurance plans cover preventive services to help people stay healthy, prohibits insurance companies from dropping your coverage if you get sick, billing you into bankruptcy because of annual or lifetime limits placed on care, and discriminating against children with pre-existing conditions.
By 2014 when the law is fully implemented, people will be able to purchase private insurance coverage through new state-based markets called exchanges, which will offer a way to get insurance that isn’t provided by—or tied to—an employer. Americans will have the security of knowing they don't have to worry about losing or finding coverage if they're laid off, change jobs, or are self-employed. And further patient protections will take effect: insurers won’t be able to deny care to anyone based on a pre-existing condition, or limit the amount of care they’ll cover over a person’s lifetime.
Over the last week, we’ve looked at many of the ways the new health care law is making a real difference in many people's lives:
Looking at the big picture also helps tell the story of how the Affordable Care Act is benefitting people around the country.
For more stories and facts about how the Affordable Care Act is helping people around the country, check out our map. You can share your own story, too: tell us how health reform is improving your care.