Health Care Reform
Now that health care reform is the law of the land, the National MS Society is helping states implement the law, ensuring that health care reform works for people living with MS. Our Government Relations Committees in Alaska, Montana, and Washington are monitoring this implementation within each state.
We are pleased with the recent passage of the health care reform bill because it represents an important step toward comprehensive health care reform. The passage of this health care reform bill serves as a critical first step as we continue to advocate for the development and modification of legislation that will ensure that the needs of people living with MS are met. Health coverage has been inadequate for so many families living with MS — from covering the high cost of treatments to access to high quality long-term care.
MS Activists, all throughout the country, have worked relentlessly to advocate for health care that ensures that the complex needs of people living with MS are addressed. This broad-based group of volunteers, including many living with MS, developed the National MS Society’s Health Care Reform Principles. These bold and broad based principles have been a blueprint for the Society’s advocacy efforts on health care reform. MS Activists have been actively engaged in advocating for these principles and many concepts that are a part of the recently passed bill, such as:
- Prohibiting discrimination against an individual based on pre-existing health conditions;
- Placing limitations on out-of-pocket costs;
- Providing access to long-term supports and services;
- Expanding the Medicaid program;
- Providing subsidies to those who cannot afford coverage; and
- Eliminating lifetime limits on the amount of coverage a person may receive.
We are deeply appreciative of the work of MS Activists and are pleased that many of the Society’s National Health Care Reform Principles are integral components of the health care reform bill. There are other components of the bill about which we do not have a position.
Watch this video to learn how the new health care law works, especially the changes that are happening now and the big changes coming in 2014.
To learn more about health care reform, check out these resources:
- National MS Society’s Health Care Reform Principles - the blueprint for our advocacy efforts on health care reform
- Explaining the Basics of Health Reform - just the facts in an easy-to-understand manner
- Health Care Reform Implementation Timeline - a timeline to tell you when important pieces of the health care law come into effect
- HealthCare.gov - the federal government's health care site to learn which private insurance plans, public programs and community services are available to you.