What does the health care bill mean for me?
The hotly contested health care reform bill has passed the House of Representatives. The historic vote by Congress to reform health care in America passed Sunday by a very close margin, with 219 ‘Yes’ votes and 212 ‘No’ votes. The Democrats needed a total of 216 votes for President Obama’s health care reform bill to pass.
It was unclear up to the time the results of the health care vote were announced if the Dems would be able to sway enough undecided voting members by Sunday’s vote. All 178 Republican Representatives voted against the President’s health care reform bill as expected.
Rep. David Obey (D-Wisconsin) announced the results of the historic health care reform vote at around midnight Sunday night on Capitol Hill, declaring 219 ‘Yay’s and 212 ‘Nays’. By just three votes, the health care reform bill has become a reality. President Obama must still sign the health care bill into law, however it already cleared the hurdle of the Senate when it passed last December.
President Obama says Americans will begin feeling the effects of some aspects of his health care reform within the next six months. Unlike bills that take years and years to come to fruition, the health care bill claims that action will be more immediate. Many Americans are simply wondering what exactly is in this health care bill, anyway, and what changes patients might expect to see in their insurance or care.
Some of the significant changes to the American health care system include the following:
– Small business owners will be allowed to take up to 35% of what they pay for their employee health insurance premiums as tax credits.
– Senior citizens who need supplemental prescription coverage beyond what Medicaid and Medicare can provide will be alloted $250 per year towards medications, closing the Medicaid ‘donut hole’.
– $5 billion dollar fund to help cover currently uninsured Americans who have pre-existing medical conditions that would otherwise preclude them from seeking insurance.
President Obama spoke out immediately after the House voted to pass his health care bill, expressing his thanks to the members who helped pass the bill, but also to the many ordinary American citizens who “knocked on doors, and took the time to write a letter or email” to help solidify today’s win.
“Today’s vote answers the dreams of so many who have fought for this reform.” Obama said early Monday morning, just after the bill passed. Obama reminded Americans that grassroots efforts do pay off, saying, “Change comes not from the top down, but from the bottom up.”
For a great list of definitions of complex terms used to muddy up this health care bill beyond the point of anyone (including, likely, the majority of the bodies who voted on it) actually understanding it, visit this article!
CNN televised coverage