Health

Obamacare: New Year's Day ushers in huge changes in US health care

President Obama at the Affordable Care Act signing ceremony in the East Room of the White House on March 23, 2010.
President Obama at the Affordable Care Act signing ceremony in the East Room of the White House on March 23, 2010.
Win McNamee/Getty Images

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Covering California series icon 2013

New Year's Day ushers in some of the most significant changes in health care imposed by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which President Obama signed into law on March 23, 2010.  In each year since then, portions of the law have taken effect.  The changes for 2014 include a  host of new consumer protections, as well as the requirement that nearly every American have health insurance or face a tax penalty. 

Some of the biggest changes taking effect starting Jan. 1, 2014: