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July 2015

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and Chronic Neurological Illnesses: Benefits and Challenges

Author Affiliations
  • 1Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia
  • 2Oregon State University/Oregon Health & Science University College of Pharmacy, Portland
  • 3New York Medical College, Valhalla
JAMA Neurol. 2015;72(7):739-740. doi:10.1001/jamaneurol.2015.0273

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is the most sweeping attempt at establishing access to medical care for US citizens since the establishment of Medicare by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in 1965. Despite its polarizing political, social, and economic effects, many provisions of the ACA have been enacted sequentially since being signed into law in 2010. Provisions of the act effectively eliminated insurance denial for preexisting conditions, created cost-sharing limits for in-network care, and removed annual dollar limits on covered benefits. Certain essential health benefits standards are covered such as hospitalization, ambulatory care, and prescription drugs. All of these provide considerable advantages to patients for services that were not in place before the law was signed.

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