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Health Care Reform and what it means
for Kansans

The YouToons Get Ready for Obamacare: Health Insurance Changes Coming Your Way Under the Affordable Care Act

Are you ready for Obamacare? Join the YouToons as they walk through the basic changes in the way Americans will get health coverage and what it will cost starting in 2014, when major parts of the Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare,” go into effect.

Written and produced by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Narrated by Charlie Gibson, former anchor of ABC’s World News with Charlie Gibson and a member of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees. Creative production and animation by Free Range Studios.


Resources to help make sense of the 2010 federal health care reform law - Affordable Care Act

Two Years Later: The Benefits of the Affordable Care Act for Kansas - Fact Sheet from U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (April 6, 2012)

News - Kansas Foundations Establish Fund to Prepare State for Implementation of Health Reform Law (May 19, 2011)

Updates and additional resources- As new and updated information relating to "The Who, What, When and How of Health Reform: A Guide for Kansans" (below) becomes available, we'll post it below.

The Who, What, When and How of Health Reform: A Guide for Kansans
Everyone knows something about the new federal health reform law. But most of us need a little help sorting through it and understanding what it will mean to us as consumers.

Because the law is very complex, this summary aims to provide general understanding without overwhelming detail. For clarifying information or updates to this content, please check back frequently at This brochure was developed from a summary prepared by Kansas Health Institute, Topeka.

Two versions are available, one for on-screen reading or basic printing, and one for printing in the original 11x17 folded brochure format. Please choose the version that best fits your needs.

Screen/basic printing version [pdf] | Original 11x17 format [pdf]

Updates and changes

December 15, 2010 updates
[Update to "Ending certain insurance company practices" section]
The pre-existing condition exclusion applicable to children has been interpreted to prohibit both waiting periods and outright denials of coverage based on pre-existing conditions.

[Update to "Changes in Medicare drug program" section]
At the time this brochure was produced, the federal estimate was that 73,000 Kansas seniors would qualify for the drug coverage rebate. As of December 2010, the official tally is 45,000 checks.

[Update to "Incentives for Employers" section]
Since the time the brochure was produced, the percentage of Kansas adults with employer-sponsored coverage has dropped slightly from 67% to 66%.

[Updates to "Changes Coming Later" section]
1) Additional clarity has now been provided regarding penalties for individuals failing to maintain required coverage levels. The penalty cap is set at 3 adults (violating the provision) per household (i.e. $695 x 3 = $2,085). Of those for whom 2.5% of income would exceed the flat dollar fine of $695, an additional layer of cap is set at the average cost of a "Bronze" plan available in the insurance exchange.
2) The number of uninsured has grown to roughly 347,000
3) For health insurance exchanges, the law defines "small employer" as having fewer than 100 employees. States have the option (until 2016) to set that definition at fewer than 50 employees, and Kansas Insurance Department / Commissioner Praeger decided that they will do that for the Kansas exchange.
4) The percentage of those at or below 400% FPL who are uninsured is still right around 17%.
5) The percentage of uninsured at or below 400% FPL has gone up from 84% to 89%.
6) The percentage of the uninsured who are young adults is still around 40%; however, the number of uninsured young adults (19-34) is now slightly over 137,000.

June 28, 2010 updates
[Update to "Incentives for Employers" section]
The estimate of the number of small businesses potentially eligible for the small business tax credit to purchase health insurance has been adjusted upward from 43,000 to 50,600.

[Update to "Changes Coming Later" section]
The Medicaid expansion will actually reach people earning up to 38% more than the Federal Poverty Level. The additional 5% from the 33% reported in the Guide is the result of a 5% income disregard in the legislation.

Additional resources

News - Kansas Foundations Establish Fund to Prepare State for Implementation of Health Reform Law May 19, 2011

Grants are available to help Kansas organizations carry out activities that support implementation of the federal health reform law. See news article for background.

The Affordable Care Act: What does it mean for Kansas? [pdf]
Suzanne Cleveland, Kansas Health Institute, December 15, 2010.

The Affordable Care Act and Health Insurance Exchanges [pdf]
Suzanne Cleveland, Kansas Health Institute, December 15, 2010.

Federal Health Reform Update [pdf]
Presentation to the United Methodist Health Ministry Fund Board of Directors by Suzanne Cleveland and Gina Maree, Kansas Health Institute, May 12, 2010.

Elsewhere on the Web:

Foundations Helping States Implement Affordable Care Act Provisions
Kaiser Health News, June 5, 2011

Federal Health Reform's Impact in Kansas
Kansas Health Policy Authority

What Will Happen Under Health Reform--and What's Next
The Commonwealth Fund

Health Reform Spotlight: What you need to know today
National Association of Community Health Centers