This post was written by CBS News correspondent Nancy Cordes and CBS News producer John Nolen
5696255Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid unveiled his health care proposal "The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" on Wednesday night.
The Congressional Budget Office says the bill would cost $848 billion dollars over 10 years, reduce the deficit by $130 billion and would extend coverage to 94 percent of eligible Americans, reducing the number of uninsured individuals by 31 million leaving about 24 million people uninsured.
Here's a look at some of the key provisions of the bill:
• Effective Date 2014
• Requires most individuals to purchase coverage through their employer, privately or through a public plan. Includes exemptions for economic hardships. Fines for individuals not complying would start at $95 in 2014 phased-in over time up to $750.
• Creates a new public federal health insurance plan, the so-called "public option" which would compete with private insurers. States would have the choice of opting out by passing a state law.
• Establishes Health Insurance Exchanges, a marketplace where individuals, small businesses and others could purchase health care coverage.
• Insurance companies could not refuse coverage based on pre-existing condition. Would not allow higher premiums for pre-existing conditions or based on gender.
• Allows children to stay on their parents plan up to age 26.
• There's no employer mandate, but fines are paid by companies if the government subsidizes employees coverage.
• Extends tax credits to individuals and families earning up to 400 percent of the poverty level, on a sliding scale depending on income. On the low end of the scale Americans would pay no more than 2 percent of their income on premiums, rising to 9.8 percent at the high end of the scale.
• Forty percent Tax on high premium insurance plans, so-called "Cadillac" plans, those plans costing over $8,500 for individuals and $23,000 for families.
• Creates a new 5 percent tax on elective Cosmetic Surgery
• Increases Medicare payroll taxes by one-half percent to 1.95 percent for individuals earning more than $200,000 or couples earning more than $250,000.
• Limitations on Health flexible spending accounts, capping annual contributions at $2,500.
• Provides for one year additional $500 dollars for seniors before hitting the Medicare donut hole, but does not close the donut hole.
• Expands Medicaid program for low – income people from 100 percent of poverty level to 133 percent of poverty level.
• Immigrants in the country illegally would not receive health care subsidies, nor would they be able to obtain insurance through an insurance exchange.
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