Friday, November 16, 2012

Beware of pre-existing conditions


Four years ago, a Minnesota father donated a kidney to his daughter. The donation allowed her to stop three-times-a-week dialysis and return to a normal life. The donation also allowed his health insurance company to drop him from coverage this year, citing “chronic kidney disease,” a pre-existing condition. 

Insurance companies have a long-standing practice of denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. The practice lowers the risk that premiums won’t cover payouts so it makes financial sense. However, it often creates situations that are egregious violations of what most would consider common sense as well as simple decency and fairness. 

Since passage of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in 2010, supporters have touted the elimination of insurance companies’ ability to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions as one of the new program’s major benefits.

The problem is that this is one of the features of the act that do not take effect until 2014. This father with one kidney is just out of luck and will have to pay larger premiums and higher deductibles for high-risk coverage for two more years.

The delays negotiated into passage of Obamacare have one thing going for them. They are giving us plenty of time to appreciate why substantial reform in how health care is paid for in the United States is critical.

In 1963-64, high school debate contests considered the topic: “Resolved: That Social Security benefits should be extended to include complete medical care.” We have kicked this particular can down the road long enough. The year 2014 cannot come too soon.

 

 




About Comments

Comments with content that seeks to incite or inflame may be removed.

Comments that are in ALL CAPS may be removed.

Comments that are off-topic or that include profanity or personal attacks, libelous or other inappropriate material may be removed from the site. Entries that are unsigned or contain signatures by someone other than the actual author may be removed. We will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or any other policies governing this site. Use of this system denotes full acceptance of these conditions. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

The comments below are from the readers of mtexpress.com and in no way represent the views of Express Publishing, Inc.

You may flag individual comments. You may also report an inappropriate or offensive comment by clicking here.

Flagging Comments: Flagging a comment tells a site administrator that a comment is inappropriate. You can find the flag option by pointing the mouse over the comment and clicking the 'Flag' link.

Flagging a comment is only counted once per person, and you won't need to do it multiple times.

Proper Flagging Guidelines: Every site has a different commenting policy - be sure to review the policy for this site before flagging comments. In general these types of comments should be flagged:

  • Spam
  • Ones violating this site's commenting policy
  • Clearly unrelated
  • Personal attacks on others
Comments should not be flagged for:
  • Disagreeing with the content
  • Being in a dispute with the commenter

Popular Comment Threads





Copyright © 2014 Express Publishing Inc.   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.