The Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act today after a 5--4 split decision. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. delivered the decisive vote in favor of the law. The upholding of the "Obamacare" bill has implications for many groups around the nation, especially the cancer community.
The Affordable Care Act not only offers healthcare coverage for cancer patients who could not afford it before, but it also offers coverage for preventive services. Below is a list of some preventive services useful to the cancer community in the U.S. and people living in the U.S. in general:
- Colorectoral cancer screening for adults over 50
- Breast cancer mammography screenings every one-to-two years for women over 40
- Breast cancer chemoprevention counceling for women at higher risk
- Cervical Cancer screening for sexually active women
Women and children cannot be denied health insurance because of a pre-existing condition under the new healthcare law. Young adults under the age of 26 can continue to be covered under their parents' health insurance.
The Affordable Care Act, however, is still far away from total fruition, considering it will not be fully rolled-out until 2014. Additionally, Republican Presidential Candidate, Mitt Romney promises to revoke the law if elected.
Other questions about how much the new piece of legislation will cost have been raised by "Obamacare" skeptics. According to an article posted by CNN.com, the federal government is set to spend more than $1 trillion over the next decade to subsidize coverage and expand eligibility for Medicaid, leading some people to believe that the healthcare reform will dig a hole too deep for the U.S.' economy to climb out of. The law also requires virtually every American to obtain health insurance by 2014 under what has been termed the “individual mandate,” or pay a penalty consisting of two percent of their income.