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Reform law puts patients in control of their health care

THREE years ago, Taylor Wilhite, of Marblehead, Ohio, was diagnosed with leukemia. Like many other American parents, Taylor’s mother and father assumed their affordable health-insurance coverage would get her the care she needed. Unfortunately, the Wilhites’ family policy came with a $1 million lifetime cap. That sounds like a lot of money, but patients with serious illnesses can easily spend that much or more.

Three rounds of chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant put Taylor into remission, but she was approaching her policy’s spending cap. Although her insurance company extended her coverage, Taylor’s parents still can’t get her the follow-up care her doctors recommend because they fear exceeding the cap.

Like most other families, Taylor’s parents have paid their insurance premiums every month, in good times and bad. It’s basic fairness that their insurance should be there when they need it. Fortunately, the new Affordable Care Act will give Taylor and her family, and other families like them, much-needed peace of mind. These new consumer protections will help
For most plans starting on or after Sept. 23, new rules under the Affordable Care Act stop insurance companies from denying health coverage to children based on pre-existing conditions. By 2014, these protections will apply to all Americans. No unjustified cancellations of coverage. Today, insurance companies may cancel the policies of people who become sick just because they or their employer made an unintentional mistake on their insurance paperwork.
Under the health-care reform law, insurers may no longer rescind anyone’s coverage, except in cases of fraud or intentional misrepresentation of material fact. Americans who pay their premiums and act in good faith will have the security of knowing that their health coverage may not be taken away from them when they need it most.

No lifetime limits/restricted annual limits on coverage. Health plans now may limit care through annual or lifetime limits. Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies no longer will be able to limit the care that Americans such as Taylor need. The law also will phase out annual dollar limits on coverage over the next three years.

This entry was posted on Thursday, July 29th, 2010 at 2:56 am and is filed under Health Insurance. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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