Is major healthcare reform on its way? Are we in for a sweeping reorganization of the healthcare field that could affect how insurance companies deal with consumers in the future? Legislation has been passed to try to help heal what some call a crippled system.
As an example of the state of the system, a woman with cancer in Los Angeles, California, recently had her insurance coverage cancelled when the provider insisted her cancer was a pre-existing condition. The burden of the cost of chemotherapy treatments shifted to her as the insurance was declined.
This story, which is from Healthreform.gov, illustrates the very real financial burden that a person can endure. How many people’s household budgets could handle the strain of a sudden bill for thousands of dollars, a cost that could lead to financial ruin, or even worse, lack of treatment?
The Affordable Care Act, signed into law in March of 2010 by President Obama, was designed to help consumers avoid situations such as the one outlined above, where insurance companies leave patients without coverage when they need it most.
The woman may be in better shape than many of her fellow Californians, as the state has a long history of fighting for the rights of individuals to have access to affordable healthcare. While the Supreme Court wrestles with the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, California works to be ready for any type of decision, wanting to ensure that affordable California health insurance is a very real option for all citizens.
In an article featured on Newamericamedia.com, Dr. Felix Aguilar, chief medical officer at the South Central Family Health Center in Los Angeles, talks about how reform advocates need to remain in tune with any Supreme Court decision. California has focused on building the infrastructure for any future coverage expansion and implementing as many of the new changes as quickly as it can. But should the mandate fail, Aguilar explained that has plans to persist.
“If it doesn’t pass, then I’ll be calling the governor the next day, to not lose momentum,” he said.
Peter Harbage, who worked as an assistant secretary for health at the California Health and Human Services Agency and as a special assistant to the administrator for federal health in the Clinton Administration, is confident that change is inevitable and completely independent of the Court’s decision on Obama’s legislation.
“Regardless of whatever happens in the Supreme Court, health reform will continue,” Harbage said. “It already has made a positive impact, and it will continue to make a positive impact.”
Also, in the Newamericamedia.com article was this:
The California Endowment, which was set up to expand access to affordable, quality health care for underserved Californians, is now focused on the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
Dr. Robert Ross, the foundation’s president and CEO, said in a press release: “We know that the Affordable Care Act will positively impact the health of communities in our state and its implementation is core to our mission of ensuring all Californians have access to health care services.
“We have to rely on California’s strong history of covering people, of taking on health care challenges including trying to implement health reform on our own; and rely on policy makers, who – if parts were struck down – would still seek to maximize coverage opportunities of the federal law.”
The Affordable Care Act was designed to help consumers by stopping insurance companies from limiting the care they need, which includes exclusions involving pre-existing conditions for children and enforcing limits on lifetime coverage.
In addition, the Act would remove insurance company barriers between consumers and their doctors, meaning they would be able to choose the doctor they wanted from their plans’ provider networks.
All the pro-active work in California points to a more promising future for individual California health insurance.
While the battle to improve healthcare options for all continues on many fronts, the most important factor for consumers to focus on when managing their health remains information. Saying informed about all options available is very important.
Health Insurance Outlet helps consumers stay on top of their options with online assistance designed to aid in making informed decisions. Once those decisions are made, Health Insurance Outlet is able to offer California medical insurance with a competitive field of rates, coverages, and premiums. For California health insurance quotes from all the major carriers in California, visit us at www.healthinsuranceoutlet.com.