The Affordable Care Act and You! 5 Facts Moms Need to Know

The Affordable Care Act and You! 5 Facts Moms Need to Know

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Making sure your baby is healthy isn’t a choice, it’s a right!

The dust has settled on the Affordable Healthcare Act for 2014. Or has it? Did you know that Open Enrollment for 2015 starts in less than 5 months?  (The site goes live on November 15, 2014 and is open until February 15, 2015.) A lot of people are still confused about the Affordable Care Act (ACA), what is and how it affects their families.  And who can blame them?  Even those of us who work in this field find ourselves scrambling for the “right” answers.

There are a few facts that haven’t changed since the ACA’s start.  Here are just 5 key points that ALL moms need to know when it comes to navigating through the Affordable Healthcare Act:

1.     Insurance companies are MANDATED to cover ALL children through age 19! Young adults (between ages of 19 and 26) are now allowed to stay on their parents health plan unless their employers offer health insurance.

2.   No PRE-Existing Conditions carve-outs: That means that neither you nor your children can be denied insurance coverage due to a pre-existing condition like asthma and diabetes, a practice that once left about 17.6 million kids uninsured. Even better?  Insurance companies cannot charge higher rates for members with pre-existing conditions.

3.   Pregnancy and pre-natal care is a covered benefit.  For those of us who had our children in the early 2000’s it’s a relief to know that pregnancy is no longer considered a “pre-existing condition” for which we could be denied coverage.  Women-specific tests that are now covered under the ACA include:

  • Well-woman visits
  • Gestational diabetes screening that helps protect pregnant women from one of the most serious pregnancy-related diseases.
  • Domestic and interpersonal violence screening and counseling.
  • FDA-approved contraceptive methods, and contraceptive education and counseling.
  • HPV DNA testing, for women 30 or older.
  • Sexually transmitted infections counseling for sexually active women.
  • HIV screening and counseling for sexually active women.
  • Mammograms and Colonoscopies (since Sept 2010)

Further, and this is one that is near and dear to my heart, um, breast: Breast pumps are also a covered benefit under the ACA. In fact, Breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling are all covered benefits.

4.   “You don’t eat in the bathroom, why should my child?”  How many times have you wanted to say that to someone who glared at you while you were nursing your baby?  Employers MUST offer a non-bathroom private space for breastfeeding moms to pump during the work day (for at least a year after childbirth

5.  Preventative Care including Immunizations for your children are a covered benefit.  All newborn care is considered a “preventive service” under the ACA. Providers have to give immunizations and other preventive health services for infants, children, and adolescents without any cost sharing.

6.   Not Everything Has Gotten Easier:  While critics may cite the many problems with the ACA, many folks are benefitting from this legislation.  However, one of the biggest downsides that I discovered has to do with changes to Flexible Spending Accounts. In past years it was easy to submit receipts for over-the-counter medication (OTC) like cold medicine or eye drops to one’s Medical Flexible Spending Account and be reimbursed for the cost.  Not anymore.  Now you have to get a prescription from a physician if you want to receive reimbursement. Finally, the largest allowable amount of money that may be included  in your Medical Savings Account was decreased  to $2500.

Want more information about the Affordable Care Act and how it affects you and your family, please visit the government website at www.healthcare.gov

Real Moms Love to Eat….And Eat!

Has it actually been a month since my last post?  Shame on me!  And so much has happened including a visit to Jilly’s Bakery in St. Louis where K was able to meet the winners of the Food Network’s 3rd Season of Cupcake Wars.  But I digress….

A few months ago, during my stint with Oprah, I met this fabulous mom, Beth Aldrich, who totally turned me onto her method of enjoying food.  She told me that she wrote a book about her experiences and advise and asked if I would be interested in learning more about it.  Naturally, I said “YES!!” with the caveat that I had no intention of getting rid of my favorite foods in my diet.  She assured me that getting rid of foods was not part of her plan.  I decided to read on…

Fast forward a few months and Beth’s book has been published.  I totally enjoyed reading and following her advice.  She is currently on a book tour and I encourage you to stop by one of her events and take a look at her book, ask Beth questions and learn how Real Moms not only LOVE to Eat, but can still enjoy our favorite foods and fit into our skinny jeans.

Real Moms Love To Eat

Save your space today and RSVP.

FREE AUTHOR EVENTS-Northshore:

Evanston Public Library Sunday, January 8th 3-4pm
Located: Community Meeting Room (1st Floor)
Local author Beth Aldrich new book “Real Moms Love to Eat: How to Conduct a Love Affair with Food, Lose Weight and Feel Fabulous.” The book presents a 10-week plan to help mothers rediscover a more natural, nourishing, and pleasurable relationship with food. Aldrich is a Certified Health Counselor and a frequent nutrition columnist forDiet.com and SocialMoms.com. You can learn more about her book atRealMomsLovetoEat.com.
Books will be available for purchase and signing.  RSVP: http://evanstonlibrary-eorg.eventbrite.com/

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Renee: This is the one that I am planning on attending! 
Whole Foods Market Northbrook Monday, January 9th 1pm 
Moms, re-Energize After the Holidays! Join Beth Aldrich, the author of the bookReal Moms Love to Eat: How to Conduct a Love Affair with Food, Lose Weight and Feel Fabulous™ as she presents concepts in healthy eating for moms. She will help moms discover pleasurable ways to tap into the energy of foods that revitalize, provide sustainable energy, build strength and slow down the aging process. Her workshops are designed to equip and inspire participants to take greater ownership over their long-term health and overall wellness. Book signing and refreshments afterwards.
RSVP: 

http://wholefoodsnorthbrook-eorg.eventbrite.com/
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Bookstall Winnetka January 25th 6:30pm
The Bookstall in Winnetka welcomes local author Beth Aldrich celebrating the publicaton of her book: “Real Moms Love to Eat: How to Conduct a Love Affair with Food, Lose Weight and Feel Fabulous”. The book outlines a 10-step approach to having a love affair with food and still looking and feeling fabulous, that women WANT to eat and Beth believes they CAN, if they indulge on the right foods. Skinny jeans, energy, radiant looks: Check, Check, Check. Beth even offers a 21-day suggested meal plan for women to carry on in the kitchen!   Books will be available for purchase and signingBeth cannot wait to meet you and help you to embrace your love affair with food. RSVP:http://thebookstall.eventbrite.com/

LUNCHEON and Demo EVENTS:

The Daily Method North Shore Wednesday, January 11th at 11 a.m

TDM: located in Kenilworth, IL. welcomes author Beth Aldrich celebrating the publicaton of her book: “Real Moms Love to Eat: How to Conduct a Love Affair with Food, Lose Weight and Feel Fabulous”. The book outlines a 10-step approach to having a love affair with food and still looking and feeling fabulous, that women WANT to eat and Beth believes they CAN, if they indulge on the right foods. Skinny jeans, energy, radiant looks: Check, Check, Check. Beth even offers a 21-day suggested meal plan for women to carry on in the kitchen!  Beth teams up with fellow Health Counselor, Kristie Booker, to share some super greens secrets from her book, complete with sampling and a book signing.

This event is open to the public, grab a friend and join us. Beth and Kristie cannot wait to meet you and help you to embrace your love affair with food.  Cost for class, including the book and samples, $30

      **Call the studio to RSVP (847) 920-5260.

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Michigan Shores Club-Luncheon January 19th 11:30am-1pm

Michigan Shores Club in Wilmette will host local author Beth Aldrich celebrating the publication of her book: “Real Moms Love to Eat: How to Conduct a Love Affair with Food, Lose Weight and Feel Fabulous”. The book outlines a 10-step approach to having a love affair with food and still looking and feeling fabulous, that women WANT to eat and Beth believes they CAN, if they indulge on the right foods. Skinny jeans, energy, radiant looks: Check, Check, Check. Beth even offers a 21-day suggested meal plan for women to carry on in the kitchen!

All NON – MEMBERS should contact The Bookstall in Winnetka to make a reservation for this event, 847-446-8880.  MSC Members contact MSC to RSVP.

Even if you do not live in Chicago, I encourage you to check out Beth’s book.  It is refreshing to have a healthy diet book that doesn’t preach or tell you all of the things that you CAN’T do!  Beth tells you all of the things that can be done, and there are quite a few.  Please let me know if you stop by one of her discussions and let me know your thoughts.  Even better?  Let me know how you enjoyed her book.

All the best and healthy eating !