Monday, May 30, 2011

Health Insurance Basics

Unless you're a millionaire and can pay for your health care out of pocket, health insurance is a crucial purchase. The time to buy it is before you have an accident, suffer a serious illness or discover you're pregnant.
       Individual health insurance doesn't cover health care for medical problems or conditions that start before the date you were issued a policy, although there are now Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plans available from the government. However, due to health care reform legislation, health insurers will no longer be able to deny coverage or refuse to renew coverage to adults with pre-existing conditions beginning on Jan. 1, 2014.

Will you lose your employer-sponsored health insurance in 2014?

Since Congress passed the federal health care reform package, debate has buzzed over whether employers will stop offering health insurance benefits in 2014, pushing their workers into the new health insurance exchanges.
       Should you be worried about losing your group health plan at work? Probably not, human resource consultants say, although the picture remains a bit fuzzy.
       A recent study by the Urban Institute on employer-sponsored coverage under health reform concludes "reports of its demise are premature." Using a "health insurance policy simulation model," researchers found that overall employer-sponsored coverage under the Affordable Care Act would not be much different from what it would have been without reform.