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New Health Care Benefits to Start Thursday, Americans Still Confused

(NEW YORK) -- Starting Thursday, new health care benefits will go into effect in a move that can have an impact on millions of Americans.  Insurance plans renewing on or after Sept. 23 will be required to eliminate lifetime limits on insurance coverage, offer coverage for children with pre-existing conditions, remove lifetime caps on coverage, provide free preventive care and allow young adults up to the age of 26 to remain on their parents' health plans, among other changes.

The Obama administration has ramped up efforts to tout the new law. President Obama will hold a "backyard event" in Virginia on Wednesday at the home of a person who is benefiting from the Affordable Care Act.

But six months after the landmark bill was signed into law, people are still largely unclear about what the changes mean for them as health care remains embroiled in a heated political debate. According to an Associated Press poll released Tuesday, More than half of all Americans believe the changes will raise taxes for most people this year. About a quarter of respondents thought the law would set up panels of bureaucrats who would make decisions about people's health.

Overall support for the health care law also remains low, although it goes up when people are asked about specific provisions, demonstrating the confusion among consumers.

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