everybody. It’s the most wonderful time of the year -- and not just
because it’s the holiday season, but because it’s also open enrollment season
over at HealthCare.gov.
That was a dad joke, I know. But
this weekend, I hope you’ll take a moment to do something really important for
yourself and your family: make sure you’ll have health insurance for 2017.
If you’re not covered yet, now is
the time to sign up. Go to HealthCare.gov and
shop for the plan that’s right for you. Like most Americans who get
coverage through HealthCare.gov, there’s a good chance you’ll find a
plan that costs less than $75 a month. And while the enrollment period lasts
until the end of January, as long as you sign up by this Thursday, December 15,
you’ll be covered starting January 1.
Now, this doesn’t apply to the
roughly 250 million Americans who already get insurance through the workplace,
or thanks to Medicare or Medicaid. But here’s what does. Every American with
insurance is covered by the strongest set of consumer protections in history –
a true Patients’ Bill of Rights. You now have free preventive care, like mammograms
and contraception. There are no more annual or lifetime limits on the essential
care you receive. Women can’t get charged more just for being a woman. Young
people can stay on a parent’s plan until they turn 26, and seniors get
discounts on their prescriptions. Every American can rest free from the fear
that one illness or accident will derail your dreams -- because
discrimination against preexisting conditions is now illegal. And since 2010,
we’ve seen the slowest health care price growth in 50 years.
Whether or not you get insurance
through the Affordable Care Act, that’s the health care system as we now know
it. Because our goal wasn’t just to make sure more people have coverage
-- it was to make sure more people have better coverage. That’s why we want
to build on the progress we’ve made -- and I’ve put forth a number of ideas for
how to improve the Affordable Care Act. Now Republicans in Congress want
to repeal the whole thing and start from scratch -- but trying to undo some of
it could undo all of it. All those consumer protections -- whether you
get your health insurance from Obamacare, or Medicare, or Medicaid, or on the
job – could go right out the window. So any partisan talk you hear about
repealing or replacing it should be judged by whether they keep all those
improvements that benefit you and your family right now.
One new study shows that if
Congress repeals Obamacare as they’ve proposed, nearly 30 million Americans
would lose their coverage. Four in five of them would come from working families. More
than nine million Americans who would receive tax credits to keep insurance
affordable would no longer receive that help. That is unacceptable.
We can work together to make the
system even better -- and one of the best ways to do that is make sure
that you’re in it. So remember: Sign up onHealthCare.gov by this Thursday, and your health
insurance will be there for you when you wake up on January 1. Thanks
everybody, and have a good weekend.