U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
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HHS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Top 10 FAQs

At what age can a child legally be left alone to care for themselves?

State child abuse and neglect reporting laws do not specify the age at which a child can be left home alone. You may want to contact your local police department or child protective services agency for information about specific local regulations or ordinances.

What is the Affordable Care Act?

The name “Affordable Care Act” (ACA) is the name used to refer to the final, amended version of the comprehensive health care reform law and its amendments. The law addresses health insurance coverage, health care costs, and preventive care.

What is the difference between Medicare and Medicaid?

Medicare is a medical insurance program for people over 65 and younger disabled people and dialysis patients. Medicaid is an assistance program for low-income patients' medical expenses.

Where can I find information about HIPAA, health information privacy or security rules?
The following materials are found on the Office for Civil Rights website and are available to assist patients and families in understanding HIPAA privacy rights and procedures.
Who is eligible for Medicaid?

In all states, Medicaid provides health coverage for some low-income people, families and children, pregnant women, the elderly, and people with disabilities. In some states the program covers all low-income adults below a certain income level. Additionally, some states have expanded Medicaid to cover more people because of the Affordable Care Act.

Where can I find a doctor that accepts Medicare and Medicaid?

To find a doctor that accepts Medicare and Medicaid payments, you may want to visit the Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services' Physician Compare. You can search by State, County, City, Zip Code, and doctor's name and by the name of a Group Practice.

Where can I find information about the Federal Poverty Levels?

You can find detailed information about the Federal poverty levels at: http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/. Additionally, at this site is information on research related to the definition of poverty level.

As a small business owner, am I required to offer health insurance to my employees?
No employer has to offer coverage. Some large businesses that don't offer coverage meeting certain standards may have to make a shared responsibility payment in 2015.
What is the Medicaid program?

Medicaid is a health coverage assistance program for children, adults, pregnant women, people with disabilities, and seniors who qualify due to low income or other criteria.

What is the Health Insurance Marketplace?

The Health Insurance Marketplace is a resource where individuals, families, and small businesses can compare health insurance plans for coverage and affordability; get answers to questions about your health care insurance; find out if you are eligible for tax credits for private insurance or health programs like Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP); enroll in a health insurance plan that meets your needs.

Content created by Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs (ASPA)
Content last reviewed on June 9, 2015