Uploaded: Thu, Aug 2, 2012, 12:15 pm
More women to get health services under new law
As of Aug. 1, Affordable Care Act required all new private insurance plans to cover certain preventive services without co-payments
Access to women's health services expanded on Wednesday, Aug. 1, due to the federal Affordable Care Act. The guaranteed services are part of a package of preventative services in the act designed to help underserved populations avoid or reduce the impact of serious chronic diseases.
Previous to the enactment of the health care law, many insurance plans did not cover basic women's preventive care. Co-payments for important women's services prevented some people from seeking services, U.S. Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (D-Palo Alto) said in a statement about the new law on Wednesday. More than half of American women are thought to have delayed or forgone necessary care due to cost.
The health care law requires all new private insurance plans to cover the preventive services without co-payments or other cost-sharing requirements. Those services include domestic-violence screening, FDA-approved contraception, breastfeeding support and supplies, gestational diabetes screening, human papilloma virus testing, sexually transmitted disease counseling, HIV screening and "well woman" visits.
New health-insurance plans must also cover without cost-sharing: mammograms every 1 to 2 years for women older than 40; cervical-cancer screening; smoking- and alcohol-cessation programs for adults; prenatal screenings and tests; diabetes and blood-pressure screening and counseling; and depression screening for adolescents and adults.
Although the law takes effect Aug. 1, most plan changes start at the beginning of a new plan year, according to the nonprofit National Women's Law Center, which supports and promotes women's rights.
The requirements will be in effect for most plans on Jan. 1, 2013. School health plans, which often begin their health-plan years around the beginning of the school year, benefit from the Aug. 1 start date, the law center noted.
Eshoo lauded the new provisions.
"Forty-seven million women across the country, including 5 million women in California, will now receive important preventive services without co-pay because of the new health care law. With these new provisions, women will no longer need to forgo preventive services to stay healthy, catch potentially life-threatening illnesses earlier, and protect against prohibitive medical costs," she stated.
A fact sheet on the new women's benefits is available through the law center.
Posted by John,
a resident of Danville
on Aug 8, 2012 at 11:39 pm
Spcwt, Oh, I know Bush reduced tax rates that's a no brainer. That's my point, we have some of the lowest federal tax rates in the last 50 years, and the economy collapsed. I still ask where are the Bush tax cut jobs?
If the Bush tax cuts were so good why did the disparity between the middle class and wealthy soar during this time?
Back to healthcare, the $89,000 you mentioned above is the maximum annual income for a family of four to qualify for Obamacare. Do you believe this family of 4 will be buying group insurance, I don't think so, the reason they need Obamacare is because they are not covered by group insurance provided through a company. They will have to buy expensive individual policies. Check the rates for these policies out. Go to Anthem Blue Cross and check out the individual policy rates. Take a couple in their 40's or 50's with 2 children, and you will see that their premiums will be substantially higher than the $10,000 credit and God help them if they are not healthy.
By the way, I buy my own insurance through an individual policy and was paying close to $1,800 a month, in 2011, with a $3,000 deductible and $10,000 annual out of pocket (the deductibles are on top of my premiums). My wife has a group plan with only 2 employees, her share of the premiums are $600 a month with $3,000/$5,000 deductible. We pay a combined $2,400 a month for premiums alone.
I was a member of the Anthem Blue Cross "Death Spiral". The Death Spiral plans are individual healthcare plans that were closed to new members. The number of members in these plans shrinks every year as the healthier members move to more affordable policies. The remaining members, many of whom have some preexisting condition, can not move to another plan and are hammered with ever increasing rate increases.
I have a bad back and had surgery, but I still work (I'm 61 years old, my blood pressure, cholesterol, blood pressure are perfect, I'm over 6 feet tall and weigh 170) and was unable to move to any other policy (including Anthem, Blue Shield, Kaiser). Over the years, I wrote many letters to politicians, Blue Cross or whoever would listen without success.
Every year my premiums went up 25% or higher. In 2011, a class action lawsuit was won by the members of these policies against Blue Cross. The settlement allowed plaintiffs a one-time move to another Blue Cross policy (the caveat being the new plan could not be an upgrade). Before this settlement I was at the point where I was going to drop my insurance.
I had to make a tough choice continue to pay the $1,800 a month or lower my premiums with much higher deductibles.
I had to do a little math. I compounded my $1,800 premiums at a 25% interest rate (believe me this is conservative rate, my premiums have averaged 28% annual increases) for the 4 years until I'm 65. Viola, I would be paying over paying over $5,000 a month by my 65 birthday.
As I mentioned earlier, I am self employed, no employees and my wife and I gross about $80K a year.
So I now have a $12,000 deductible and $20,000 annual out of pocket maximum. However, my premiums dropped to $700 on January 1, 2012.
On May 1, 2012, my annual renewal date, Blue Cross Anthem increased my premiums 25%.
Again my question where are any alternative proposals to Obamacare by conservatives or the GOP? I am tired of waiting.
SPCWT, I am not a political person, but this subject is the 3rd rail for many families, and thus my need to speak up, it has been a spirited debate. However, it is time for me to move on.
I respect your point of view and agree to disagree.
Your memory must be a lot better than mine. I seemed to remember that from October 2001 to March 2003 the huge buildup of military in the mideast just awaiting the work from Bush (Sorry I meant tricky Dick Cheney)to do our "Shock and Awe". I am stil "shocked" 10 years later and counting, but I'm still waiting the "awe" to arrive. Believe me I was not for Obama upgrading the Afganistan war, another huge waste of money
Bringing the dicscussion back to the war, I agree with you these wars were a huge waste of money, we will rebuild these countries for years to come. I did not see any