The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), otherwise known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is a United States federal statute which was signed into law on March 23, 2010 by President Barack Obama. Obamacare has become the most common colloquial term used by both supporters and opponents to refer to the law.
The ACA was enacted with the goals of increasing the affordability and quality of health insurance, reducing the costs of healthcare for individuals and the government and expanding public and private insurance coverage to lower the uninsured rate. The ACA’s two main mechanisms to increase insurance coverage are: creating state-based insurance exchanges where people and small businesses can buy health insurance plans, and expanding Medicaid eligibility to include those individuals within 138% of the federal poverty level.¹ The law would also require insurance companies to offer the same rates to applicants regardless of pre-existing conditions or gender. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has been controversial, with opinions often being divided by party lines.
1. "Medicaid Expansion." American Public Health Association. Retrieved from: