Affordable Care Act Remains Intact
Coloradans continue to qualify for financial help to lower health insurance premiums
After much debate in Washington D.C., the Affordable Care Act remains the law of the land though there was one important change you should understand. In the federal tax bill that was passed by Congress in late 2017, the penalty requiring individuals to have a Qualified Health Plan or pay a penalty was repealed starting in 2019. This is the only part of the law that was repealed and for 2018, the tax penalty for not having health insurance remains the law. The rest of the law, including financial help in the form of tax credits and cost-sharing reductions, remains in place.
As Colorado’s health insurance marketplace, we will continue to deliver on our mission to increase access, affordability and choice for Coloradans purchasing health insurance. We remain the only place where Coloradans can apply for financial help to lower the cost of their 2019 health insurance premiums.
Do I still need health insurance?
If you are still asking yourself “Do I still need health insurance?” The answer is “YES!”
What remains constant and true is the importance of protecting the health and financial future of you and your family. Broken bones, disease and other chronic conditions aren’t political, but can happen at any time. And, in some cases, are preventable if you have access to care and health insurance. Join the thousands of Coloradans who already signed up for 2018 health insurance and, if you qualify, take advantage of the financial help to help you afford coverage.
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Responding to change yields results
If anything has been constant in our organization’s history it is the inevitability of change, whether it’s in market dynamics, regulation or the public policy environment. In the past, when confronted with change we thrived. Our ability to change course is best demonstrated by the following successes:
- More than 93% of Coloradans have health insurance, the highest rate in the state’s history and one of the highest rates in the country.
- Nearly 600,000 residents of the state have gained coverage since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into effect.
- Bankruptcies tied to medical debt have dropped by more than 60 percent, to 41,000 a year and people are having an easier time paying their medical bills.
- We have an established a broad network of expert stakeholders from hospitals, trusted community-based organizations, Assistance Network partners, and brokers that mobilize each year to get more Coloradans enrolled in health insurance.
Future of Connect for Health Colorado
It is important to remember that Colorado’s path to building a health insurance Marketplace started years before the ACA. Starting in 2006, the Colorado General Assembly and Gov. Bill Owens established the Blue-Ribbon Commission for Health Care Reform, known as the “208 Commission.” The Commission produced the “Final Report to the Colorado General Assembly,” which put forth recommendations from a diverse set of bipartisan stakeholders, one of which was the concept of a health insurance marketplace, much like the one we operate today. In many ways, our state was ahead of the curve.
You can find related resources on policy on our Healthcare Reform Policy page.