It's true that major parts of the 2010 law are clearly troubled, but others are working fairly well.
The risk is that the
The Affordable Care Act, or ACA, expanded coverage in two main ways. It offered subsidized private health insurance through online markets such as HealthCare.gov that cater to people without workplace coverage. It also allowed states to expand their
Together, those features have helped push the nation's uninsured rate below 9 percent, a historic low.
A look at some of the law's major elements, their current status, and how they might be affected by the repeal and replace legislation advancing in the House:
Status: Thirty-one states have expanded
In an even bigger change, the bill would end
INDIVIDUAL HEALTH INSURANCE
Status: The health law was meant to expand and stabilize the market for individual health insurance, through which roughly 20 million people get coverage. It's been a roller-coaster ride instead. As sicker, costlier customers came into the market, premiums and deductibles shot up. Consumers eligible for the law's income-related financial assistance were cushioned, but millions who still pay their own way are in shock. Former President
ONLINE INSURANCE MARKETS
Status: HealthCare.gov froze up the day it was launched in 2013, an episode that embarrassed the Obama White House and prompted a high-tech repair job lasting weeks. Since then, the federal website has improved, now serving as the backbone of a system that insures about 12 million people nationwide. Several states operate similar websites.
Status: As a way to get healthy people into the insurance pool, the law imposed tax penalties on uninsured people deemed able to afford coverage. Last year 6.5 million people paid penalties averaging
Status: Obama's law limited what insurers could charge their oldest, pre-
Impact: Coverage would become more affordable for young adults, but premiums for older people would rise even as they contend with physical ailments that emerge with age.