The Affordable Care Act

Starting in 2014, “Obamacare” will require most U.S. citizens to enroll in a health plan or pay a penalty.

This means millions of patients will start shopping for a health plan this fall…and enter the health care system as insured next year.

This will stress the short supply of primary care providers…and help open the door for pharmacists to become officially recognized as providers and take on more roles.

Many community pharmacies will help patients navigate the system…similar to the way they did with Medicare Part D drug plans.

The Health Insurance Marketplace or “exchange” will open on October 1 to help people compare and purchase plans.

Plans will offer a comprehensive set of benefits…but copays will vary. Plans with lower premiums will have higher copays.

There will also be less expensive catastrophic coverage plans for people under 30…to encourage younger and healthier folks to sign up.

Advise patients to check a plan’s pharmacy benefit to make sure their drugs will be covered.

Federal subsidies will help reduce costs for some patients.

People making up to four times the federal poverty level can apply for financial assistance…very low-income people will be eligible for Medicaid.

Prevention will be huge. Annual wellness exams and many screenings will be provided at no charge to patients.

More patients will be eligible for medication therapy management (MTM) services, such as a yearly medication review and follow-up. est laborum.

Ask one of our pharmacists for more information.

Francis Al. Rubino, PharmD