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US House passes landmark care

[ 2010-03-23 11:50]     字号 [] [] []  
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WASHINGTON - The US House of Representatives approved a sweeping $940 billion healthcare overhaul on Sunday in a two-step process that sends a Senate version of the bill to President Barack Obama for his signature and a package of changes sought by Democrats to the Senate bill.

The legislation aims to extend coverage to 32 million uninsured people.

Here are key provisions of the Senate-passed legislation and the proposed changes.

Insurance reform

The legislation would require substantial insurance market reforms that would bar insurers from excluding people for pre-existing medical conditions and prevent them from arbitrarily dropping policy holders.

Proposed changes could allow dependent children to remain on their parents' health policies until age 26.

Coverage mandates

Individuals would be required to obtain health insurance. Those who fail to obtain coverage would face fines of up to 2.5 percent of income by 2016.

Firms with more than 50 workers who do not offer coverage face fines of $2,000 per full-time employee. Federal subsidies would help low-income people get coverage.


The Senate bill included a 40 percent excise tax on high-cost health insurance plans.


1. What is the price tag attached to the US healthcare bill?

2. The proposed changes would allow children to remain covered by their parents’ healthcare policies until what age?

3. Is coverage voluntary or mandatory?


1. $940 billion.

2. 26.

3. Mandatory. Individuals would be required to obtain health insurance if they don’t already have it, and companies with more than 50 workers would be required to obtain health insurance for workers.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

US House passes landmark care

About the broadcaster:

US House passes landmark care

Renee Haines is an editor and broadcaster at China Daily. Renee has more than 15 years of experience as a newspaper editor, radio station anchor and news director, news-wire service reporter and bureau chief, magazine writer, book editor and website consultant. She came to China from the United States.