Approximately 71 million Americans in private health insurance plans received coverage for at least one free preventive healthcare service, such as a mammogram or flu shot, in 2011 and 2012 because of the Affordable Care Act, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in an announcement. The new data was released in a report from HHS on March 18.
Additionally, an estimated 34 million Americans in traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans have received at least one preventive service, such as an annual wellness visit at no out of pocket cost because of the healthcare law. Taken together, this means about 105 million Americans with private health plans and Medicare beneficiaries have been helped by the Affordable Care Act’s prevention coverage improvements.
Preventive services, consumer protections, and other reforms under the Affordable Care Act are giving millions of Americans of all ages more value for their healthcare dollars and contributing to the slowest growth in healthcare costs in 50 years.
“Preventing illnesses before they become serious and more costly to treat helps Americans of all ages stay healthier,” Sebelius said in a statement. “No longer do Americans have to choose between paying for preventive care and groceries.”
The law is keeping down costs and providing more value for consumers and taxpayers through new consumer protections, holding insurance companies accountable, building a smarter healthcare system, and providing seniors with vital savings on their prescription drugs.