What I Think Politicians Forget When They Promise Health Coverage to Those With Continuous Insurance


Editor’s note: This story reflects an individual’s experience and is not an endorsement from The Mighty. We believe in sharing a variety of perspectives from our community.

Today I received a letter from my insurance company telling me they will no longer be offering individual health plans in 2018. They indicated that my options going forward would either be Medicare or Medicaid.

In the middle of all of the health insurance rhetoric, let me tell you why this matters…

I am a person that has had to maintain continuous coverage since I was 18 years old due to a variety of pre-existing health conditions. Even though the expense of health insurance has been extraordinary and continues to rise, I have kept that coverage continuous because I could not afford to go without insurance. I always purchased the best insurance possible in order to make sure I was covered.

 

I’m also not naive when it comes to healthcare. I was a CEO of my own business strategy firm in home health and hospice for many years. Throughout that time I maintained continuous small group coverage for myself and my small team…but then my life changed in an instant. I suffered a traumatic brain injury which has since led to pituitary dysfunction, adrenal insufficiency, chronic migraines, post concussive syndrome and dysautonomia. I have been unable to return to work as I now live with a variety of disabilities and an even more complicated medical picture filled with pre-existing conditions.

Throughout all of this though, I have maintained continuous health coverage. But now that option is being taken away. This is what is not being discussed in today’s rhetoric, where politicians are attempting to calm voter concern by indicating that people with pre-existing conditions will be covered as long as they maintain continuous insurance. This statement assumes that insurance is actually being offered!

For many of us in the disabled community, we do not get access to insurance through places of employment because we cannot work. Therefore we are left with only individual insurance options. And if individual insurance is no longer offered, that leaves us without continuous coverage…and suddenly everything looks very different.

I urge you to contact anyone who will listen. I believe it is a disgrace that our country is attempting to pass a law that could so greatly affect the people in our society who are the most vulnerable…people with cancer, chronic illness and other debilitating conditions. I do not consider this making America great again. This is a failure.

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Thinkstock photo via everydayplus.


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