If you have been following the updates on health care reform, the results from last week’s U.S. Senate race in Massachusetts made the future of health reform legislation unclear. If you are currently waiting for the debate to conclude, you may be leaving yourself open to serious risks.
In December 2009, Opinion Research Corporation conducted a studied sponsored by eHealth, Inc. The research found that nearly a quarter of the respondents intended to delay obtaining health insurance coverage until health reform legislation went through. After all data was collected, five serious risks and reasons to get covered now were discovered.
1) The Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) insures that emergency rooms must provide emergency medical treatments regardless of your ability to pay. This has been seen as a fallback plan to no insurance but when you look further into using these services, a harsh reality sets in. Although you will receive the services, you will also receive the bill. After the initial emergency is dealt with, it may be difficult to receive subsequent treatment such as surgery and physical therapy. Furthermore, the act covers emergency services but does not apply to non-emergency, but possibly threatening conditions like cancer or heart disease.
2) If you’re thinking the cost of premiums will be more then the cost of a visit to the hospital, you may want to think again. Without health care, you will be paying more for health services then others that are insured. Uninsured persons are charged full price for medical services because they don’t qualify for the discounts negotiated between medical providers and the insurance companies.
3) Medical expenses are a leading cause of personal bankruptcy. The study referenced above, found that 60% of personal bankruptcies in the United States are related to overwhelming medical bills.
4) Waiting for coverage means you are running the risk of becoming uninsurable. Under the current system, if you are diagnosed with a serious medical conditions while having no coverage, it then becomes very difficult to qualify for coverage. Although the reform of health care is suppose to address this, the future of reform legislation is becoming increasingly unclear.
5) Being young does not make you invincible. Although many young adults choose not to get coverage because they don’t believe they will get sick, they are still at risk. Young adults, ages 19 to 29 are more likely to visit the Emergency Room than many other age groups because their higher risk of accidental injury.
If you are uninsured but don’t know what policy would be right for you, contact us! Our licensed agents are here and happy to serve you.