<p >When the Affordable Care Act takes full effect in January 2014, Boone County residents without health insurance will be eligible for federal "premium tax credits" that would help pay health insurance premiums, according to the report.
Eligibility for the credits will be determined annually based on income reported on the previous year's income tax forms. Those with the lowest incomes will get the largest tax credits.
With the current Medicaid program covering Missourians below the federal poverty line, this new proposal would expand coverage to residents with annual incomes between $47,100 and $94,200 who live above the poverty line, depending on family size.
The report illustrates the effect of the credits with a hypothetical family of four. With a household income of $35,300, the family would today be unable to afford adequate health care. After the act goes into effect, the family's insurance premium of $12,500 would be split into equal payments of $118 a month, or $1,410 total. The remainder would be covered by a tax credit of $11,090.
Under the act, Missouri residents who are unable to get insurance through work will be able to buy coverage through a health insurance exchange created by the federal government.
State Rep. Stephen Webber, D-Columbia, said Missouri had the opportunity to create its own health insurance exchange, but state lawmakers chose not to.
"The state was given a certain amount of time to create the health insurance exchange, but we didn't," Webber said. "Now, we will have a federal government designed health insurance exchange."
Enrollment in the health insurance program will begin in October, according to the report.
The tax credits will be available for people of all ages. Young adults are expected to make up about 58 percent, or 304,380 of those Missourians eligible, according to the report.
An estimated 8,680 Boone County residents, or 66.3 percent of the population, will be eligible for the credits, according to the report. Of those eligible in Boone County, 81 percent are white or non-hispanic, 10 percent are African-American, and about 5 percent are Hispanic. The data was based on 2010 Census data.