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Health Reform & You: Resources to Navigate the Changes

March 2, 2011
CHI Health


Health Reform & You: Resources to Navigate the Changes

Do you know what health reform really means to you and your family? Have you even been able to keep up with the on-again off-again debate and continued rhetoric (from both sides of the aisle) without getting more confused than ever?

You’re not alone.

Take, for example, this recent Kaiser Family Foundation survey which found that one in five people think the health reform legislation was repealed (it wasn’t) and that it is no longer law (it is). Another 26% of people either didn’t know or didn’t care about the status of the law.
Unfortunately, whether you understand the law or not – or even know it’s still on the books – health reform is going to affect you, how you access care when you need it and how you pay for it. So we wanted to give you a few of our favorite resources to help you figure out everything you need to know:

Take the Kaiser Family Foundation, as I mentioned above, for example – they offer a wealth of information about the law, including all of the provisions and when they take effect. They also regularly poll and survey Americans in order to gauge public opinion and knowledge of health reform.

Another option is a new web site, HealthCareandYou.org – which just went live this week. The site was created by a coalition of industry organizations, including AARP, American Medical Association, American College of Physicians and the Catholic Health Association to, “provide the public with easy-to-understand information about the health care law.” You can easily navigate this site, choosing your name and age – and even if you’re a small business owner – to see how the law will affect you.

Finally, we’re also partial to HealthCare.gov. Yes, it’s a government website, but unlike other government-run health information sites you may be familiar with, this one is actually pretty user-friendly. Our favorite part of this site is the timeline. You can log on and click anywhere from 2010 to 2015 to see when certain provisions take effect. For example, did you know that as of October 1, states are allowed to offer home and community-based services to disabled residents through Medicaid, rather than institutional care in nursing homes? Well, you do now!

Finally, if you need to find a doctor to see in the area when all of these reforms take effect, then CHIHealth.com is second to none!

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    Mr. Dunlop, I'm sorry that you feel this way about this post. However, I refuse to believe that the 50% of Americans who don't know the status of or don't fully understand health reform are simply going to ignore it forever. Thus, we posted these links for anyone who may read this blog and realize that they are one of the millions of Americans who aren't fully informed. Are we going to reach all of them? No. But we can certainly try to help as many people as possible. Also, we have previously looked into health reform for our readers, including: - this explanation of the major provisions when it was first passed: http://www.blogalegent.com/AHBlog-Health-reform-what-does-it-all-mean - this reminder of the major provisions that went into effect six months later: http://www.blogalegent.com/AHBlog-Health-Reform-Six-Months-Later As you can see, many of the major reforms already in place affect individuals and insurance companies, thus our focus on helping our patients. As for the changes that will directly affect the way we do business, most of those are yet to come - but I can assure you that we are working to prepare for them. We've already publicly discussed one of those projects, our Patient Centered Medical Home (http://www.alegent.com/body.cfm?id=5465&action=detail&parent=1900&ref=8) and I'm confident that we'll share more of what we're doing when the timing is right. Thanks for your comment, Jen Homann Communications Strategist Alegent Health

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    Mr. Dunlop

    As I go through this article I hear, "(copy and paste picture from another site) Roughly half don't know/care about the healthcare bill to pay attention OR assume their candidate repealed it, but for those who haven't bothered to look into it (which pretty much means that same half) here are some links to look into it if you feel like bothering... I'm guessing if people don't know already, they won't bother getting informed now. To me, it seems that if you have people reading on a topic already, on a subject that many haven't really looked into, you'd just say here's what we know for sure, here's what we don't. That might make this a better resource for the public rather than just linking out to other sites and not saying a darn thing yourself. I was hoping Alegent would have something to actually SAY about the health care bill seeing as they are directly affected by it. Maybe that's asking too much?

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