Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) on March 23, treatment 2010.

Six of the provisions for which Health Promotion Advocates had been advocating became law when President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.  Some of the provisions require regulation language to be written before they are implemented. This bill included 32 additional health promotion provisions developed by Senator Harkin (D-IA) and Senator Baucus (D-MT). All of this represents a huge victory for our field and for the health of the American people.

The 11, shop 000 + letters sent by members of the Health Promotion Advocates grassroots network to members of Congress helped them understand that their constituents supported these health promotion provisions and persuaded them to retain these provisions, despite partisan efforts to cut costs as much as possible.  These health promotion provisions area among the few provisions that enjoyed bipartisan support!

Health Promotion Provisions in the Affordable Care Act

Included:

  1. Development of a national health promotion plan.
  2. Enhanced health promotion research.
  3. Technical assistance to enhance evaluation of workplace health promotion programs.
  4. Regular periodic surveys on workplace health program prevalence and components.
  5. Grants to pay a portion of the cost of comprehensive workplace health promotion programs for small employers.
  6. Allow employers to offer employees a premium discount of up to 30% (instead of the current 20%), for positive lifestyle practices or participation in health promotion programs, include safeguards, and refer to Health and Human Services to study benefits of increasing the portion to 50%.

Not included:

  1. A national campaign to employers on the benefits of workplace health promotion programs. (Note: a limited campaign will be part of the grant program, point #5 above
  2. Research on best practices in workplace health promotion programs (Note: some of the funds from point #2 above can be used for this purpose)

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