March 31, 2010

Health Care Bill - Detrimental to Developmental Disabilities?

One of the positive aspects of the new health care bill has seemed that insurance companies will be required to provide coverage for children with developmental disabilities. But according to one New York Times journalist and several insurance companies, this may not be the case. Apparently insurance companies have noted a loophole in the much too quickly drafted and hardly read legislation:

Insurers agree that if they provide insurance for a child, they must cover pre-existing conditions. But, they say, the law does not require them to write insurance for the child and it does not guarantee the “availability of coverage” for all until 2014. William G. Schiffbauer, a lawyer whose clients include employers and insurance companies, said: “The fine print differs from the larger political message. If a company sells insurance, it will have to cover pre-existing conditions for children covered by the policy. But it does not have to sell to somebody with a pre-existing condition. And the insurer could increase premiums to cover the additional cost.”

This loophole would disappear in 2014 as mentioned in the quote above, but until then, the healthcare promise of coverage for all will most likely miss the intended mark and could unintentionally result in less overall coverage for kids with developmental disabilities or pre-existing conditions. Click here for full article.

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