USDA sponsored Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC).
Benefits.gov (formerly GovBenefits.gov) was launched in an effort to provide citizens with easy, online access to government benefit and assistance programs. Eight years after its initial launch, GovBenefits.gov underwent a major redesign and became Benefits.gov. However, the program’s mission remains the same: reduce the expense and difficulty of interacting with the government while increasing citizen access to government benefit information.
The site’s core function is the eligibility prescreening questionnaire or “Benefit Finder.” Answers to the questionnaire are used to evaluate a visitor’s situation and compare it with the eligibility criteria for more than 1,000 Federally-funded benefit and assistance programs. Each program description provides citizens with the next steps to apply for any benefit program of interest.
At the time of the site’s launch in 2002, it featured 55 programs, representing the ten original Federal agency partners. Today, the website now includes over 1,000 programs representing 17 Federal partners. For an in-depth review of our activities, take a look at Benefits.gov: A Progress Report to Citizens (2008)(.pdf file), a summary of our mission and efforts to serve citizens.
The Healthcare Reforms of 2012!
Benefits.gov wants you to be informed about the healthcare reforms and changes in 2012 that may affect you and your loved ones.
In March 2010, the Affordable Care Act established a number of immediate changes to America’s healthcare system to improve quality and lower costs of healthcare, as well as increase access to healthcare for Americans, including:
- a 50 percent discount for name-brand drugs in the Medicare “donut hole”
- allowing young adults to stay on their family’s healthcare plan until the age of 26
- the existence of insurance plans for those with pre-existing conditions
- new small business tax credits
Since then, 28 other changes have gone into effect, such as increased access to home and community based services for people with disabilities through Medicaid. The remaining provisions of the law will continue to be rolled out into 2015 and beyond. You can see what changes have already taken place and what is yet to come by visiting the What’s Changing and When timeline on Healthcare.gov.