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How Will Your Business Be Affected by the Affordable Care Act?

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UPDATE 2/21/13: This event, previously scheduled for Friday, Feb. 22, has been postponed due to severe winter weather. The Springfield-Greene County Health Department says a future time and date has yet to be determined. 

If you're a little confused about the new federal healthcare laws, you're not alone. To break down the complex parts of the laws, the Missouri Foundation for Health will host a presentation in Springfield. The interactive presentation will show how the health care changes will affect individual working Missourians. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark has this report.

“We’ve done two hundred of these meetings; I’ve done a majority of them.”

That’s Thomas McAuliffe. He works as a policy analyst for the Missouri Foundation for Health, or MFH.

“We start off with a basic presentation of what’s in the law. That is kind of the shell we use. Lots of the specific topics that I’ll address, and to the depths that I will address them, come from questions that people have had” said McAuliffe.

The law he refers to is the Affordable Care Act.

Mike Brothers, spokesman for the Springfield-Greene County Health Department, says the health department asked these experts to come explain this significant policy change to local residents.

“Any time you attempt to fix problems in a very large system, some other things can and will come up. That is really what this forum will be about is focusing on an up-to-date presentation on what we know for certain, know a little bit about, and not so certain about as far as the Affordable Care Act goes,” said Brothers.

At the event, Missouri Foundation for Health experts will break down the different parts of the new law, and try to dispel any myths associated with it. They will explain the timeline of the changes that are going into effect, and tell how the law helps people get affordable insurance. The presentation will include information about employer responsibilities and costs, and will highlight what individuals need to know to navigate through the evolving health system. There will be a focus on how the act specifically affects those in the public health sector.

Brothers says he thinks people are mostly curious about which changes will affect their day-to-day lives.

“The real underlying point of a lot of the changes in the Affordable Care Act are about preventative health. Preventative health is something you focus on every day. It’s attempting to meet individual responsibility with a system that really bolsters the good things people can do for themselves. That’s the underlying part of it. The real question is, how do you put a system in place that affects people in a positive way?” said Brothers.

The Affordable Care Act will affect most Americans in some way, Brothers says. He says the experts at the Missouri Foundation for Health are nonpartisan and well-informed. He says they have completely read the bill and are up-to-date on how the latest administrative decisions are expected to affect people.

Attendees will be given opportunity to ask questions before and after the session. The town-hall style meeting is free, with no RSVP needed.

For KSMU News, I’m Rebekah Clark.