The situation of health coverage in in CONROE TEXAS
1. After five years of the Affordable Care Act, more than 16 million people have health coverage.
That's more people than the populations of New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago combined. This number includes parents who can finally afford to take their kids to the doctor, families who no longer risk losing their homes or savings because someone becomes ill, and young people who are now free to pursue their dreams without worrying about losing access to health care.
2. Medicaid is helping millions.
The Affordable Care Act allows states to expand eligibility for Medicaid, and 28 states and the District of Columbia have done so. Across all 50 states, there are 11.2 million additional Americans enrolled in Medicaid compared to a baseline period in the fall of 2013.
While not every state expanded Medicaid, those that did are seeing especially strong coverage gains. In Medicaid expansion states, the uninsured rate among families with incomes below 138 percent of the federal poverty line declined by 13 percentage points, nearly double the decline in non-expansion states.
3. Those with pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied health insurance.
Prior to the Affordable Care Act, health insurance companies could deny you coverage or charge you more because of a health problem that you had prior to applying for insurance. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, health insurance companies can’t refuse to cover you just because you have a pre-existing condition and they can’t close you out of coverage by charging you more than someone who doesn’t have a pre-existing condition.
This key provision means that up to 129 million Americans with pre-existing conditions are no longer at risk of being denied coverage. This includes the parents of over 17.6 million children with pre-existing conditions who no longer have to live with that worry.
4. The uninsured rate for young Americans is at its lowest point since at least 1997.
Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, the uninsured rate for young Americans has declined by more than 40 percent over the past five years. Since 2010, more than 5 million young adults have gained coverage. This includes 2.3 million young adults who have gained coverage by being able to stay on their parent's health plan. Under the Affordable Care Act, young adults can stay on their parent’s coverage until age 26. With all that can happens in a young person's life, this provision helps ensure that those who are just starting out in college and work careers can plan with the assurance that they have access to quality and affordable coverage.
5. Americans no longer have lifetime and annual limits on their coverage.
The Affordable Care Act has lifted the lifetime health benefit caps for 105 million Americans. Previously, many plans set a lifetime limit on how much they would spend for your covered benefits during the entire time you were enrolled in their plan. If you went over, you’d be paying out of pocket. Annual limits also constrained families and inpiduals by restricting how much they could receive per year. That's not how it should be. That’s why the Affordable Care Act prohibits health plans from putting annual or lifetime dollar limits on most benefits.
These are just five of the core ways in which the Affordable Care Act has helped Americans get quality, affordable health care. See for yourself: Click here to meet inpiduals who have benefited from health care, read their stories, and then pass them on so others can see what getting covered -- and staying covered -- means.
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In CONROE TEXAS: Why Good Trade Deals Matter to a Business
Nick Martin is the co-founder of The Pro´s Closet, an online used-cycling business. He sent the following email to the White House list to highlight why a better trade deal means a brighter future for online businesses like his.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership isn´t just President Obama´s proposed trade deal -- it´s mine, too. It´s a trade deal that millions of other online small business owners in this country would be proud to add their name to. I want to tell you why:
Every time I step through the doors of one of our 4,000-square-foot warehouses in Boulder and Denver, Colorado -- every time I see the bikes and cycling parts that line those walls and take in the energetic buzz of our 30-member team -- I take a step back and reflect on a simple fact: I own a business. Its a "pinch-me" moment -- every time.
I am a cyclist and the proud co-owner of The Pro´s Closet, an online used-cycling store. And thanks to the Internet and the availability of e-commerce platforms like eBay, we´ve gone global. After all, when its not cycling season in the U.S., its peak season somewhere else in the world.
International customers aren´t just good for business abroad; theyre great for my Colorado communities. Why? Because selling in more markets means I can hire more people here at home. In fact, more small businesses are using the Internet to grow their business by reaching new customers they couldn´t reach before.
This is why trade is so important to me. If the success of American businesses in the global economy is important to you, say youre an ambassador for a better trade deal that delivers a brighter future for all of us.
It may seem like a really remote and technical issue, but it actually has a real impact on how small businesses like mine do business. Currently more than 40% of our transactions cross U.S. borders. Unfortunately, most of our trade rules were written in a "pre-Internet" era, which means they are a nightmare to navigate for small online businesses.
Heres an example: Right now, customs rules are so inconsistent and hard to follow that if we put a cycling part in the wrong packaging or mail it with the wrong label, it wont make it to our customer in one country. The rules are different for each country, and are sometimes set up in a way that completely blocks out American business.
That is why it is so important that we secure the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a new kind of trade agreement that will ensure America writes the rules and levels the playing field for online businesses and American workers by:
Reducing and eliminating tariffs across the Asia-Pacific region
Streamlining customs procedures
Making the rules more transparent, consistent, and less costly
Helping keep the Internet open and free, enabling online businesses to operate without unnecessary infrastructure costs
Of course, as the President has said, not all of our past trade deals have lived up to their promise. Thankfully, this trade deal is on track to be different. In fact, the Trans-Pacific Partnership is shaping up to be the most progressive trade deal the world has ever seen.
In total, 22 commutations granted today underscore the President´s commitment to use all the tools at their disposal to achieve greater justice and fairness in our justice system. We further demonstrate how the exercise of this important Instituition can remedy imbalances and correct errors in judgment. Added to its previous 21 commutations, the President has granted 43 switches in total. To put the actions of President Obama in context, President George W. Bush commuted 11 convictions in his eight years in office.
To further this progress, the President has established a leniency to encourage people who were convicted under laws and policies obsolete switch request initiative. In his address, major reforms have followed, including the enactment of new criteria for potential candidates switching to satisfy even those who pose no danger to public safety, have a clean record in prison, and have been convicted in out of date laws. The Department of Justice has raised awareness about applying switching to ensure that each federal prisoner who believe are worthy of this second invaluable opportunity have the opportunity to ask for it.
Emphasizing the responsibility that brings a switchover, the President wrote a letter to each of the 22 people who received clemency today, recognizing its potential to overcome the mistakes they made and encourage them to make good decisions moving forward.
While today´s announcement represents a major advance, there is more work to delante.La Administration will continue to work to thoroughly review all requests for clemencia.Y while switching is an important tool for those seeking justice and equity in our criminal justice system, it is almost always an option of last resort, which comes after a long trial and years behind bars. That is why President Obama is committed to working with Democrats and Republicans in sensible to our criminal justice system aimed give judges greater discretion over mandatory minimum sentencing reforms. As the Department of Justice has pointed out, sometimes mandatory minimum sentences have resulted in more severe penalties for nonviolent drug offenders that many violent offenders and are not necessary for processing at this level.
Now, a major reform became law. In 2010, the President signed the Fair Sentencing Act, which reduced the disparity in the amounts of powder cocaine and crack need for the imposition of mandatory minimum sentences. The President is encouraged by the bipartisan support for improving our criminal justice system, including the promise of legislation to implement front-end changes in sentencing.It also supports bipartisan efforts to provide back-end support through education and work better training for those currently incarcerated and reforming our juvenile justice system to build on the significant reductions in the number Youth held in secure facilities.
Ensuring fairness in our criminal justice system will require ongoing efforts to invest in the types of programs that help prevent individuals turning to crime, such as education and employment, as well as changes in our sentencing laws to ensure that the punishment really fit the crime. As we work to make those improvements, the President will continue to use its authority leniency in certain cases where justice, fairness and proportionality so require, and give eligible and worthy people who have paid their debt to society the opportunity contribute in the sense ways.