When it comes to getting health coverage with pre-existing conditions there can be a lot of confusion on what it takes to what qualified versus what can disqualify you. Millions of people struggle to find health insurance due to pre-existing conditions and the search to find acceptable coverage can be frustrating. Before the Affordable Care Act was passed, there were numerous ways in which citizens were being denied due to their conditions. Now that Trump is President this could change again, but this guide takes a look at the current facts about health insurance and pre-existing conditions.
What is a Pre-existing Condition?
Typically a pre-existing condition is defined as an illness, sustained injury, or disability that a person has before applying for healthcare coverage. However, the definition of a pre-existing condition can change between states or even between insurance companies.
As of 2014, no individual can be denied health insurance based on a pre-existing condition. This means that the definition no longer needs to be taken as seriously as it should not cause any road blocks on the steps to gaining health insurance.
Health Coverage Denial
Before the Affordable Care Act was passed there were over 400 ways that a person could be denied coverage. Although the list of possible reasons varied between insurance companies, a large number remained the same. Illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, hepatitis, mental disorders, muscular dystrophy, and even pregnancy could prevent an individual from gaining health insurance coverage. Not only was the denial list huge, but it was also on the rise.
Health Care Premiums
While it is now easier for individuals to receive coverage with pre-existing conditions, there are still limitations on how high an insurance company can charge for premiums. For individuals with pre-existing conditions there is a limit to the amount of premiums a company can charge. There is also no limit for lifetime benefits, allowing individuals with serious illnesses like chronic pain and cancer to be able to access their benefits whenever they are in need.
Plans For Those Who Have Been Denied Coverage
If you or someone you know has been denied health insurance coverage in the past due to a pre-existing condition, there are specialty health plans available. The Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) is available for individuals who have a pre-existing condition, were previously uninsured, and who were denied coverage from a major insurance company or private company in the past.
Where Does the Money Go?
For those utilizing the Affordable Care act or those interested in healthcare that covers pre-existing conditions, there are many questions about where the taxpayer’s dollar goes and what exactly is being funded. In the medical community, over 75% of all healthcare expenditures are put towards research and treatment of chronic diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, and more. A lot of these diseases are actually preventable with the right access to health care. By allowing individuals with a pre-existing condition to be insured, the research programs will continue to gain pace and make steps towards preventative healthcare.
Health Insurance Has Come a Long Way
In conclusion, the history of health coverage and individuals with pre-existing conditions has been a long one. For many, it was impossible to get health coverage due to an existing illness or chronic disease. Most major insurance companies, including Aetna, Cigna, Blue Shield and more, had a long list of conditions that would deny an individual from getting coverage.
Currently, it is much easier for Americans to receive health care. Insurance companies are no longer allowed to deny coverage based on a pre-existing condition, giving many Americans the opportunity to seek better health moving forward.