The Affordable Health Care Act (ACA) Health Care Exchange is Now Open for Enrollment!

An Update for Patients of The Eye Center at Southern College of Optometry

By James E. Venable, OD, FCOVD
Vice President for Clinical Programs

Open enrollment period of the Affordable Care Act has begun. Many of our patients and friends of The Eye Center are wondering “what does this mean for me?” We have prepared this information to assist those who have questions.

If you are one of the 85% of Americans who currently have health insurance; you do not have to do anything. There is nothing required of you. Your employer, Medicare or State (in the cases of Medicaid, aka TennCare) has notified you, or will be notifying you, of any changes in your coverage as a result of the ACA.

If you are one of the 15% of Americans who currently have no health insurance; you now have the opportunity to visit the government website at or call a toll-free number (1-800-318-2596) to begin the selection process for your affordable health care coverage.

You will be able to compare various coverage plans side-by-side and make a choice based your needs and how much you can afford. You will also learn if you qualify for financial assistance to help you pay for your new health insurance.

As you compare plans, it is important to remember that with ACA, children’s eye health and vision care has been determined an essential benefit. Make sure the coverage level you select includes the optometric physicians at The Eye Center at Southern College of Optometry.