Q. I have a advanced cancer, and my employer insurance will end the end of September. I can not afford the COBRA payments. Does the ACA address this?

A.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act addresses access to health insurance coverage. The legislation does not make any changes in COBRA. However starting October 1, 2013 you may be able to enroll in an insurance plan that is more affordable than your expected COBRA payments. That coverage would not be effective however until January 1, 2014.

Please visit www.healthcare.gov to learn more and to be directed to your state health insurance marketplace website. There you will be able to search insurance options and learn if you are eligible for any premium and deductible subsidies based on your income. The site also discusses other insurance options for patients until the law takes effect in January. Most exchanges will also have representatives for you to talk with regarding your options.