The House on Sunday passed the healthcare reform bill -- the most sweeping change to the health care system since Medicare more than four decades ago. The passage means that 30 million Americans without insurance will now receive coverage, reports CNN.com. And, the legislation, which was President Barack Obama's top domestic policy issue, will reportedly ban insurers from denying coverage to those with pre-existing medical conditions, reports MSNBC.com. The legislation passed by a 219-212 vote.
Democrats hailed the bill as historic and similar to the implementation of Social Security and Medicare. Republicans unanimously voted against the bill, calling it a government takeover of healthcare and stating it would saddle the nation with debt and weaken Medicare, the New York Times reports. Thirty-four Democrats voted against the bill.
The bill already cleared the Senate and will now be sent to Obama who will likely sign the bill Tuesday, reports foxnews.com. A companion package of changes is still pending the approval of the Senate, which is expected to occur late Sunday or early Monday.
Some of the basic tenants for the health care overall according to MSNBC.com include:
Americans will be required to purchase insurance and face penalties if they refuse;
Most of the money in the bill will be reserved to help families making up to $88,000 a year pay their premiums;
Children up to age 26 would be able to stay on their parents' plans;
Medicaid will be expanded;
Insurance companies will come under new regulation and will not be able to place lifetime dollar limits on policies, be prohibited from canceling policies when a policyholder becomes sick or deny coverage to children with pre-existing conditions.
Sources: Health care latest: House passes legislation: CNN
House sends health care bill to Obama's desk: MSNBC
House Votes to Pass Senate Health Care Bill: FoxNews
House Approves Landmark Bill to Extend Health Care to Millions: New York Times