The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, is a law passed in 2010 that makes it easier and cheaper to get health insurance. It also requires insurance companies to pay for a minimum set of services like check-ups, emergency care, mental health care and maternity care. The ACA also prevents health insurance companies from denying insurance – or charging more – if you already have a health condition (a pre-existing condition). More about getting health insurance.