Statement by National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF) on the One Year Anniversary of Health Care
March 23 marks the one-year anniversary of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF) continues to praise this historic healthcare insurance reform and is working with regulators to ensure the law is implemented in a manner that assures a future of quality healthcare access for more patients. NPAF plans to continue to work with Congressional leaders in the coming years to ensure future healthcare reform legislation considers and addresses the challenges that prevent patients from being able to access the medical care they need.
“Thanks to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, seniors across the nation are better able to pay for their prescription drugs. Children are able to stay on their parents healthcare plans until age 26 and children with pre-existing conditions cannot be excluded from insurance plans. Patients whose medical conditions would have made them otherwise uninsurable now have access to care. Small business owners are getting tax credits to assist in covering their employees and existing insurance plans have been barred from imposing lifetime caps on coverage. This historic healthcare reform is also providing flexibility and resources to states,” said Nancy Davenport-Ennis, CEO and President of NPAF. “These measures are helping to ensure that more people across the nation have improved access to insurance products so they can receive care.
NPAF and its companion organization, the Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF), were established in 1996 on the principle that access to quality healthcare is a basic human need that should be fulfilled.
In 2010, PAF served nearly 83,000 patients, a 49.1 percent increase in patient cases compared to 2009. As the number of patients assisted by PAF increases year to year, the PAF population becomes more representative of the U.S. population in terms of demographic characteristics and access issues. PAF's experience in treating a patient base that is reflective of the country's demography positions it as a well-informed and credible organization when identifying the health access challenges faced by Americans throughout the country. For example, one of our patients, Joseph, a 20 year old student from New York diagnosed with testicular cancer was unable to remain a full-time student and lost his insurance coverage. He contacted PAF with access to care and affordability issues he was experiencing as a result of his lost insurance coverage. The PAF case manager identified an available resource in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. She enrolled him into the local Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan that provided coverage until his mother was able to enroll him back onto her group health insurance during open enrollment.
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