Washington, March 23, 2012
Kristen Barnfield, Easter Seals
On this second anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, Easter Seals celebrates how this law has made and will continue to make health care available and accessible, particularly for people with disabilities and chronic conditions.
“Access to appropriate and high quality health care services is essential for people with disabilities to live, learn, work and play in their communities,” says James E. Williams, Jr., president and chief executive officer, Easter Seals.
Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, three important reforms are now in place. First, children with a pre-existing condition can not be excluded from insurance coverage, giving families of more than 4 million children the piece of mind that they don’t have to chose between paying the mortgage and buying health care for their child with a chronic condition. Second, young adults are now allowed to stay on their parents’ insurance policies until they reach age 26. In 2011, 2.5 million young people gained access to insurance coverage through their parents’ plans. And new in 2011, insurance plans can no longer set lifetime limits of coverage. Today, some 105 million Americans with disabilities or chronic conditions no longer have to worry whether their insurance will pay for services they may need for the rest of their lives.
“These reforms are significant for children and adults with disabilities and their families,” adds Williams. “It is through these fundamental changes in the health care system that we can enable all Americans, including people with disabilities and chronic conditions, to live the lives of their choosing.”