9 ways healthcare is more affordable and accessible under Biden initiatives

9 ways healthcare is more affordable and accessible under Biden initiatives

President Joe Biden speaks with governors on protecting access to reproductive Health Care at the White House on July 01, 2022 in Washington, DC. The president is hosting governors from across the country in a virtual meeting just a week after the Supreme Court announced its decision to return the issue of abortion back to the states after nearly 50 years. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

By Elizabeth Sloan

March 1, 2024

Thousands of people in Arizona can now secure quality, affordable healthcare coverage, thanks to two pieces of legislation passed by the Biden administration over the past three years. These build on the Affordable Care Act—informally known as “Obamacare”—which passed in 2010 when Biden was vice president.

Big Benefits for Arizonians  

The 2022 Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), passed over fierce opposition by Congressional Republicans, delivers these benefits to Arizona:

  • Makes approved vaccines free;
  • Lowers insulin co-payments to $35 per month;
  • Lowers health care premiums for roughly 175,000 Arizonans by hundreds of dollars per person;
  • Increases financial assistance to over 8,000 low-income Arizonans to help them afford their prescription medications.

More than 40,000 Arizona residents—and 3 million people across America—whose benefits were set to expire last year got to keep their coverage. Plus, an estimated 200,000 Arizonians save about $830 per year in premium payments.

And because the law empowers Medicare to negotiate prices on heart, cancer, diabetes, and other drugs, Medicare patients will also pay less for those medications.

The American Rescue Plan (ARP), also passed over Republican opposition, brought more than $365 million in federal funding to Arizona:

  • Expands premium subsidies for low-income residents
  • Expands eligibility and increases subsidies for Medicaid, the federal health care program for low-income people
  • Expands home and community-based health care services, allowing seniors to get care closer to home and in some cases, remain in their homes
  • Increases funding for treatment of mental health and addiction disorders

The ARP also dramatically expands the number of people eligible for healthcare subsidies, at all income levels. It also enhances support for those who lost their jobs, extending unemployment benefits and COBRA coverage.

Making It Easier to Navigate the System

A Biden executive order now makes it easier to find the best and most cost-effective coverage by establishing standardized options among healthcare coverage providers, including deductibles, cost-sharing features, and maximums for out-of-pocket costs.  Shoppers can directly compare the quality and costs of various plans.

 Determine If You are Eligible for Subsidies 

Arizona participates in the federal Healthcare Marketplace program. To shop for plans and find out if you are eligible for cost-reducing subsidies, visit: HealthCare.gov.

For information about healthcare options, including Medicare and Medicaid, here’s another useful link: Health insurance in Arizona: Find affordable coverage.

Author

  • Elizabeth Sloan

    Elizabeth Sloan is a writer, speaker and public presentation coach. She specializes in medicine, education and the environment.

CATEGORIES: HEALTHCARE
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