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The American Rescue Plan includes much-needed relief for consumers when it comes to health insurance costs, and at the center of this legislation is historic expansion of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its marketplaces across the country, improving accessibility and affordability.

While it is anticipated that many people living in Douglas County will see relief under this bill, work remains to lower the costs for all consumers when it comes to their health insurance. In fact, only those in Colorado who get their plans via the health care marketplace will see any relief and, even then, it will only affect their insurance premiums, not out-of-pocket costs like co-pays and deductibles. 

An estimated 23.6 million Americans with employer-based coverage have high premium contributions that amount to 10% or more of their annual household income or pay high-out-of-pocket costs that amount to 10% or more of their annual household income. The effects of the pandemic have resulted in many Douglas County families struggling to make ends meet, and increasing health-care costs are not helping. For many, insurance deductibles are far too high. Before the pandemic, one in five Coloradans struggled to afford their health care costs or went without care altogether given these realities. Health insurance costs are increasingly a greater percentage of families' budgets every year and we have to find a way to lower these expenses. 

Our leaders must work to address consumers’ concerns regarding these ever-increasing health care costs.

Lisa Neal-Graves

Parker

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