SANTA FE (KRQE) - New Mexico is getting ready to implement the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and now the question is how will this affect all residents?
The upcoming changes in health care will affect everyone. Residents will be required by law to purchase a health insurance policy.
New information released by the Kaiser Family Foundation show the estimated costs of insurance in our state.
The new policies will be available to anyone, regardless of their health and people will not have to pay a surcharge for pre-existing medical conditions.
New Mexicans can also buy a new policy on their own, or their employer can decide to buy a group policy. It will give them a tax break and they will not have to pay as much.
The Affordable Care Act will not affect those on Medicare or Medicaid, it is just for people ages 65 and under.
New Mexico's Superintendent of Insurance, John Franchini, says the health insurance rates in the state are reasonable.
For example, a single 40-year-old non-smoker could cover 70 percent of health costs for $212 a month.
Franchini says roughly 25 percent of New Mexico residents have not had health insurance before, so he says the Affordable Health Care Act will be a positive change.
“Smokers are going to pay more...but everyone else is going to be paying the same amount of money for a premium, inside or outside the exchange. That's a very important aspect. Everyone's going to be treated equally under the affordable care act," John Franchini said.
Residents can start applying for health insurance policies on October 1st. An online application will be available on the website for the Office of the Superintendent of Insurance, click on “health care” and “reform rate.”
All of the policies will be activated on January 1, but residents can still apply for a new policy after that.
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