If you need mesothelioma treatment, the Affordable Care Act may be a way to help you get the care you need now and for the future. Unless of course, the foes of providing health care for all Americans succeed in taking it away.
As of this writing, the Affordable Care Act also known as the ACA, still stands. (It is also known as Obamacare because President Obama has become so identified with his firm support for this measure.) So if you are in need of mesothelioma treatment, the ACA may offer the best way for you to get it.
But you need to get going. According to the federal government’s own website HealthCare.gov you need to enroll by February 15 for coverage starting March 1. Also:
- Open enrollment ends March 31.
- If you haven’t enrolled in coverage by then, you generally can’t buy health coverage until the next open enrollment period for coverage the following year.
- If you don’t have health coverage during 2014, you may have to pay a penalty.
Here are four reasons from the American Cancer Society why the Affordable Care Act can help you with mesothelioma treatment:
1) More cancer survivors can now get care – The program provides immediate access to coverage for people in every state who have been uninsured for six months or more and have cancer or another pre-existing condition.
2) No more “doughnut holes” – The ACA is finally closing the Medicare Part D “doughnut hole”. Immediately after enactment, the law provided a $250 rebate to seniors who hit the coverage gap in Medicare’s prescription drug program. In addition, Medicare beneficiaries will receive discounts on brand-name drugs next year.
3) The well won’t run dry – Health plans will be banned from setting lifetime dollar limits on coverage, ensuring that people with cancer have access to needed care throughout their lifetimes. Annual dollar limits on coverage will be tightly restricted for most plans and will be eliminated altogether in 2014. Patients will no longer have to put off treatments waiting for the new plan year to start.
4) In sickness and in health – Just like marriage, your health plan now takes a vow to you when they take your business. As of this week, health insurers will be barred from dropping people from coverage when they get sick. In other words, you can’t lose your insurance for developing mesothelioma.
Major reforms to health care can seem confusing and even overwhelming. The American Cancer Society has a staff of trained experts available to answer questions 24 hours a day at 800.227.2345. Also check the government’s website for help and sign-up information.
The debate on reforming health care is far from over, but these four real-world benefits alone can have a positive impact on mesothelioma patients, bringing us all one big step closer to access to affordable, health care for all Americans.