Affordable Health Care

Issues: Health Care

(En español)

The Affordable Care Act is changing for the better the way New Yorkers shop for and buy health insurance. Beginning on October 1, 2013, millions of New Yorkers who do not already have access to coverage through their employer or a family member will be able to purchase health insurance through a new statewide marketplace. With this marketplace, those who are uninsured - including small-business employees and unemployed or self-employed workers - or those who have trouble paying for insurance will now have options to choose affordable, quality insurance. Consumers can compare brand-name insurance plans and choose the one that works best for them and their family, and many will also be eligible for financial help in order to pay the premiums for these policies.

I have created this page to connect you to information for you, your family and/or your business, answers to common questions and the tools needed to see if you qualify for help with paying your premiums or other out-of-pocket costs. You will also find links to New York's marketplace and information about how to enroll.

As always, I encourage you to contact my office if you have any further questions or need assistance. You can reach my staff at 718.779.1400.

- Joe

What will the Affordable Care Act do for you?

The Affordable Care Act provides access to newly affordable, quality health insurance for millions of New Yorkers. Additionally, the law has already implemented changes to private health insurance plans in order to protect consumers from the worst insurance company abuses.

If you're on Medicare, you won't need to do anything new - you will continue to enroll in Medicare during the regular open enrollment period. But the new law has made improvements to Medicare that you will still benefit from. Click here to find out more about how the Affordable Care Act is making your coverage better.

How do I get health insurance in New York?

New York State has set up its insurance marketplace and begins enrollment on October 1, 2013. The new marketplace is called, "New York State of Health" and can be accessed at www.nystateofhealth.ny.gov. At this site, you will be able to shop for and compare plans, find information about whether you may be eligible for help to pay your premiums and enroll in the plan of your choice.

The official New York State of Health marketplace is a secure site for enrollment, but there are steps you can take to protect yourself and others from fraud and scams that may be circulating.

Community Health Advocates (a division of Community Service Society) has been designated by the State of New York to provide insurance assistance. You can visit their website to find out about the services they offer and see how they will be working with people who need help participating in New York's health insurance marketplace.

How can I get help paying for my health insurance?

The Affordable Care Act includes programs to help individuals, families and small businesses pay for health insurance. These programs range from tax credits that lower the cost of premiums to subsidy payments covering out-of-pocket costs like co-payments for medical procedures. When you enroll through New York State of Health, you will be notified during the application process about what programs you may be eligible for. In the meantime, a number of resources are available to help you estimate what help you may receive.

  • The Kaiser Family Foundation's website has a helpful subsidy calculator for individuals and families to see how much assitance they may be eligible for.
  • Small Business Majority has set up a tax credit calculator to help businessowners estimate how much help they can receive for providing health insurance to their employees.
  • Families USA has released a report on how much help New Yorkers will receive to purchase health insurance.

More information about the Affordable Care Act:

Healthcare.gov has extensive information about the Affordable Care Act, with links to other websites for more specific, local information.