What does health insurance cover?

A wide array of health insurance plans that offer ranging benefits and access to different hospitals, doctors and other providers exist today. In 2014, health insurance plans will begin to become more uniform and share common characteristics. The Affordable Care Act mandates that all health plans in both the small-group and individual markets provide a comprehensive package of services. These are qualified as essential health benefits and including the following 10 categories:

  • Ambulatory Patient Services
  • Emergency services
  • Hospitalization
  • Maternity and Newborn Care
  • Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Services, including Behavioral Health Treatment
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Rehabilitative and Habilitative Services and Devices
  • Laboratory Services
  • Preventive and Wellness Services and Chronic Disease Management
  • Pediatric Services, including Dental and Vision Care

This requirement for all insurance plans to offer essential health benefits is one of many changes coming in 2014 under the new law.