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Obamacare Rolls Out: Signing Up And What’s Next

Signing up for Obamacare.  On the eve of the Affordable Care Act rollout, we look at its what, where, and how.

Maygan Rollins, 22, a field organizer with Enroll America, holds a clipboard with pamplets while canvassing at a bus stop, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013, in Miami. Enroll America is a private, non-profit organization running a grassroots campaign to encourage people to sign up for health care offered by the Affordable Care Act. (AP)

Maygan Rollins, 22, a field organizer with Enroll America, holds a clipboard with pamplets while canvassing at a bus stop, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013, in Miami. Enroll America is a private, non-profit organization running a grassroots campaign to encourage people to sign up for health care offered by the Affordable Care Act. (AP)

Whatever happens in Washington’s high-wire, high-volume, all-out budget shutdown battle, tomorrow morning an epic health care reform is on track to roll out in America.

The Affordable Care Act – “Obamacare” – formally opens to applicants tomorrow.  Many millions of Americans with relatively low incomes or pre-existing conditions will have a new path to health insurance.

The battle has been fierce, but the new way is fairly straightforward once you look at it.  And historic.

This hour, On Point:  beyond the smoke and fury, the rollout of Obamacare.  What you need to know.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Jonathan Cohn, senior editor at The New Republic covering public policy and politics. (@citizencohn)

Sarah Kliff, Washington Post health policy reporter. (@sarahkliff)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Washington Post: Individuals will define Obamacare’s fate — “Poll after poll has shown Americans remain skeptical and confused about Obamacare. And on the day enrollment opens, the federal government may shut down as part of a budget battle tied to a Republican effort to block the law’s implementation. But the law will move forward, in any case.”

The New Republic: Obamacare Is About to Go Live. Here’s Why It Was Worth the Wait. — “Obamacare’s new insurance marketplaces are scheduled to open for business on October 1, just a few days from now. For all the attention that date has received, it is less important than it might seem. Because new coverage won’t actually begin until January 1, most people looking to get insurance on their own won’t start shopping until the end of the year. But October 1 is still a milestone. And with Republicans threatening to let the government shut down or default if Obamacare takes full effect, it’s also a good moment to take a step back and assess the law—to think, in the broadest possible terms, about whether the reforms it has enacted are worthwhile.”

The Wall Street Journal: Firms Drop, Rather Than Upgrade, Cheapest Health Plans — “The nation’s largest provider of security guards plans to discontinue its lowest-cost health plans and steer roughly 55,000 workers to new government-sponsored insurance exchanges for coverage next year, in the latest sign of the fraying ties between employment and health care.”

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