According to the Congressional Budget Office, this bill will guarantee that 96 percent of Americans have health insurance (20 percent of individuals under age 65 were without health insurance in 2008).
In addition to the public option, the bill:
- subsidizes insurance for poorer Americans,
- creates health insurance exchanges to make it easier for small groups and individuals to purchase coverage,
- caps annual out-of-pocket expenses, and
- prevents insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions.
- individuals with annual incomes over $500,000 -- as well as families earning more than $1 million – will have a 5.4 percent income tax surcharge, and
- Medicare expenditures would be cut by 1.3 percent annually.