September 23, 2010. The initial provisions of the new health care law go into effect today. On this, the six-month anniversary of the signing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, a number of its most central consumer protections take effect.
Insurers are scrambling to comply with the new law. Starting today, insurance companies will no longer be permitted to exclude children because of pre-existing health conditions, which the White House said could enable 72,000 uninsured to gain coverage. Insurers also will be prohibited from imposing lifetime limits on benefits.
The law will now forbid insurers to drop sick and costly customers after discovering technical mistakes on applications. It requires that they offer coverage to children under 26 on their parents’ policies.
It establishes a long list of preventive procedures, like colonoscopies, mammograms and immunizations, that must be fully covered without co-payments. And it allows consumers who join a new plan to keep their own doctors and to appeal insurance company reimbursement decisions to a third party.
Read more in the New York Times: For Many Families, Health Care Relief Begins Today – NYTimes.com.