A “glitch”in the Affordable Care Act [ACA] could cost some families thousands of dollars, especially veterans with children. The oversight in the original legislation – whether it was intended or not – could affect nearly a half of a million children. Despite the recent uptick of ACA talk in Congress, it appears that the glitch will not be amended any time soon, even with the October 1 date looming.
The “glitch” is that under the law, the “affordable” part of the health care means that the cost should be 9.5 percent or less of an employee’s household income. But, if a company does not extend health care benefits to an employee’s family, then, under the ACA, the family misses out. The glitch is that these families will not be able to receive health care through state subsidized programs.
Veterans who are receiving health care benefits through the Department of Veterans Affairs [VA] and do not have coverage for their underage children may also be affected by this “glitch.”
Further, October 1 is an important date under the new health care law: it is the official opening of the Health Insurance Marketplace, where the uninsured or under insured can shop for health coverage that meets needs and budget constraints.
Below is everything veterans – with or without a family or dependents – need to know about the Affordable Care Act:
- Children of veterans who are disabled and receiving health care benefits through the VA may be eligible for subsidized insurance, available in the Health Insurance Marketplace opening on October 1
- Veterans currently receiving health care benefits through the VA – including the Veteran’s health care program, Civilian Health and Medical Program and Spina Bifida Health Care Program – already meet the health care coverage requirements under the ACA
- The VA health care benefits and coverage do not change under the ACA
- Veterans receiving health care benefits from the VA may also supplement with other private insurance
It is critically important for all veterans – especially those who sustained wounds or injuries during their time in the service – to have adequate health care coverage. Sky-rocketing medical bills are the leading cause of bankruptcy in our country, and for veterans with long-term medical care needs – such as traumatic brain injuries, mesothelioma cancer caused by asbestos exposure or post-traumatic stress disorder – having the right coverage will help defray those costs.