Op-Ed Contributor: We All Have Pre-existing Conditions

“Insurers each drew a line within the sand in which was invisible for conditions they didn’t want to cover,” said Jean P. Hall, the director of the Institute for Health along with Disability Policy Studies at the University of Kansas. “We didn’t even know where in which line was because the idea was considered proprietary information.”

Turning away people with just a hint of illness can be a reasonable business strategy. however as so often occurs within the profit-oriented health system, what can be best for business can be not necessarily not bad for patients.

When the House Committee on Energy along with Commerce studied insurance denials along with exclusions for pre-existing conditions by the four largest for-profit insurers in 2010, the idea found plentiful evidence in which “each company had business plans in which relied on using pre-existing conditions to limit the amount of money paid for medical claims.” In documents reviewed by the committee, one company listed “enhanced pre-existing exclusion processes” as an opportunity to improve growth.

The committee report found in which the insurance companies turned down one out of every seven applicants with pre-existing conditions. Such denials had jumped by nearly 50 percent between 2007 along with 2009, as the apparently successful financial strategy gained sway.

within the pre-Affordable Care Act era, states in which ran high-risk pools generally specified pre-existing conditions in which automatically qualified patients for admittance — generally serious diseases like AIDS, diabetes or epilepsy. The determination was based on health, however patients who could show they had been turned down by insurers were also generally eligible. Insurers, with different motivations, draw very different boundaries. In interviews with Dr. Hall before the A.C.A., some Kansans said in which merely having hay fever or being fat were enough to be placed within the pools.

Indeed, if insurers make the call about who to exclude, almost anyone who needs insurance might seem vulnerable. I’m by all measures truly healthy however I, too, once had an abnormal Pap smear, have taken Lexapro for short periods of my adult life along with very occasionally use an asthma inhaler before I exercise in winter. Since an orthopedist removed the cartilage in my right knee after a soccer injury in college (an operation in which has since been deemed useless or harmful), odds are in which I will someday need a knee replacement. Dr. Hall told me in which surgery alone could throw me into a high-risk pool, by many insurers’ standards.

along with what of the much vaunted benefits of cancer screening? With the possibility of a poorly financed high-risk pool looming, a rational person might avoid a colonoscopy. A polyp removal might prevent cancer however could mean paying higher insurance rates, because patients who get polyps are at risk for developing more polyps, which can be precursors to cancer.

We all have — or will have — some kind of a problem in our medical history.

Today, Mr. Albert, 52, can be not happy with the cost of his family’s high-deductible Obamacare policy: $2,000 a month. Even so, he said: “The A.C.A. was a lifesaver for us. Everyone in my family has something in which could be defined as a pre-existing condition. the idea’s expensive however I don’t have to worry about being excluded via insurance or about bankruptcy anymore.”

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Op-Ed Contributor: We All Have Pre-existing Conditions

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