I was honored to be a part of history and to have served in the Congress that passed comprehensive health care reform. Through the Affordable Care Act, we extended health care coverage to 30 million uninsured Americans while at the same time lowering health care costs overall and cutting our nation's deficit. The Affordable Care Act puts Americans and small businesses – not health insurance companies – in charge of their health care decisions.

Implementation of our health insurance reforms will be phased in until state insurance exchanges begin operating in 2014.

Many benefits are already available, including:

  • Small businesses can receive tax credits to help afford insurance for their employees;

  • Seniors can receive assistance affording prescription drugs;

  • Health plans must cover preventive health care such as mammograms and colonoscopies without charging a deductible or co-pay;

  • Insurance companies have been banned from canceling coverage when someone gets too sick;

  • Children with pre-existing conditions can get affordable insurance;

  • Insurance companies can’t place arbitrary yearly or lifetime benefit caps; and

  • Children can stay on their parents’ insurance until their 26th birthdays.

Although we have made great progress by passing our health care reform law, there is still work to be done. I am a strong supporter of research that will help us find ways to prevent, treat, and cure a range of illnesses, such as breast cancer, kidney disease, and diabetes. I am a champion for protecting women’s access to a full range of reproductive health services. Finally, I believe it should be among our highest priorities to make sure that affordable, quality health coverage is available to all Americans, including those who rely on Medicaid and Medicare for their care. 

To learn more about our landmark health care reform law, please click here.

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