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News: 2012 Press Release
For Release: March 22, 2012
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones Issues Statement Commemorating 2nd Anniversary of Health Care Reform
Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones released the following statement highlighting key health care reforms that have materialized since the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act:
"This week marks the two-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, signed into law by President Obama in 2010. For millions of Californians, it means that health insurance companies are now being held accountable for equitable coverage, accessible preventative care and spending a higher percentage of premiums on health care.
"An estimated 12.1 million Californians no longer have to worry about lifetime caps on their health care that would have cut off medical coverage when they needed it most. Plus, the health care law now prevents insurance companies from canceling coverage for some critically ill patients under the guise of small paperwork mistakes.
"Insurance companies must now spend at least 80 percent of premiums on health care and quality improvement, so some policyholders will receive rebates this summer.
"For 2.2 million children in California, the Affordable Care Act means that insurance companies can no longer deny them coverage because of pre-existing conditions like asthma or diabetes. And adults with pre-existing conditions benefit too. In 2011, 6,000 Californians under 65 gained the coverage they need through the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan created by health reform.
"Since the law passed, Californians have had their coverage expanded to provide access to preventative services like mammograms, colon cancer screenings and contraception with no out-of-pocket costs. There are more important changes to the law that Californians will benefit from in the future, but the changes I just mentioned are already in effect and helping California families."
For more information on how insurance works under the Affordable Care Act, visit: http://www.healthcare.gov/using-insurance/index.html.
The California Department of Insurance, established in 1868, is the largest consumer protection agency in California, regulating the $123 billion insurance marketplace. In 2012 the California Department of Insurance received more than 160,000 calls from consumers and helped recover over $64 million in claims and premiums. Please visit the Department of Insurance web site at www.insurance.ca.gov. Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.HELP. Out-of-state callers, please dial 213.897.8921. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.
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