Ohioans can get financial aid for health coverage

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, announced more than 916,000 Ohioans are eligible for financial help to get health care coverage in a news conference call Wednesday.

“Beginning Oct. 1, almost 1 million additional Ohioans will become eligible for financial assistance to purchase good affordable insurance in the new marketplace,” Brown said.

The marketplace is to allow Ohioans to shop for plans to meet their needs. Financial help is to become available to individuals with middle- to low-income without employer-sponsored health coverage, including a family of four with an annual income less than $94,200 and single adults with an annual income less than $45,960.

The law also is to end lifetime caps on insurance coverage, is to provide tax credits to small businesses to cover the cost to provide insurance to employees and offers free preventative care in new private insurance plans.

Jan. 1, insurance companies can no longer discriminate against individuals with pre-existing conditions by denying coverage or charging higher premiums.

For Ohioans who already have health insurance, the changes they will see are new benefits, protection from insurance company abuses, and more value for their money spent on health care, Brown said.

Ohioans will not be required to change their plan, and many are to see lower premiums, he said.

For more information, visit www.healthcare.gov or call (800) 318-2596.