Affordable Care Act
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) allows millions of individuals to gain access to insurance coverage and health services, including family planning and sexual health care. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, 137 million Americans now have guaranteed access to health insurance that covers recommended preventive services without cost sharing. Among them, an estimated 55.6 million women now have access to no-cost preventive services such as well-women visits, contraception, and recommended cancer screenings.
In anticipation of increased demand for services as a result of the law, family planning providers have been modernizing their health center operations including contracting with insurance plans and reforming their billing and revenue cycle processes. Additionally, providers have integrated and bolstered outreach and enrollment efforts necessary to fulfill the goals of the law, serving as trusted sources of information for patients interested in gaining health coverage.
As the health care landscape continues to evolve, NFPRHA works to ensure that a robust network of safety-net providers have adequate resources to modernize their operations and service delivery such that the publicly funded family planning network remains the superior standard for high-quality family planning and sexual health care delivery. NFPRHA has been an active participant in the federal regulatory and sub-regulatory process as the health law has been implemented by the federal government and individual states. Specific areas of advocacy have included efforts to strengthen essential community provider requirements for qualified health plans, ensure the women’s preventive services benefit is fully implemented, and engage providers in outreach and enrollment activities.
- This checklist is designed to help ensure eligible health centers are in compliance with §1557 requirements.On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued the implementing regulation for Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. The law builds upon longstanding nondiscrimination laws and prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability in certain health programs or activities.