Topic: Cancer as a pre-existing condition for insurance

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Posted on: Apr 12, 2011 05:18PM

Posted on: Apr 12, 2011 05:18PM

texaslonghorn31 wrote:

Hello fellow cancer survivors! Thought I would see if anyone else has been in the boat I am in.

I am currently employed and my insurance was overall really great with coverage while I went through surgery and RADS for DCIS last fall. However, I may be out of a job soon and am wondering when I get another one, will I be excluded or have to pay a higher amount due to having had cancer? Meaning do I have to show it as a pre-exisiting condition and if so can I be denied coverage or charged out the rear for it?

If I am unemployed for a time and stay on COBRA will that help any as far as the cancer being seen as a pre-exisiting condition when I get a new job with new insurance? I just finished treatment in Oct but of course am still seeing my oncologist and having mammograms pretty often for the first year.

Thanks!

Dx 7/10/2010, DCIS, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/0 nodes
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Apr 12, 2011 05:23PM sewingnut wrote:

Make sure you get a letter of insurability from your current insurer. It will just say you had insurance with no lapse in coverage and are insurable. If your new job is a group policy I don't think they can discriminate against you for preexisting conditions. I thought Obamacare eliminated that???

Dx 12/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 3, 1/7 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Apr 12, 2011 05:29PM amyisstrong wrote:

I thought that if you had continuing coverage, and went into a group (as opposed to buying your own individual insurance) that they couldn't exclude pre-existing conditions. But I am not totally sure on this.Hopefully someone will chime in here with more definitive info

BUT I do know that what you want is a 'certificate of continuing coverage' (CCC) from your prev insuranance company. I know that you do not want to have more than a 62 day period of being 'uncovered', as that allows the new company to not cover everything. If you have continuing coverage (as proven by the CCC), they have to cover you completely. At least, that is my understanding, and that goes for GROUP coverage. I think for individual coverage, the company can pretty much exclude anything they want.

My daughter got an individual policy last year and they excluded anything reproductive for A YEAR because she had a little spot on her cervix that they were watching.  It cleared up on its own and the year is over now, but I definitely held my breath til the 12 months were done.

Good luck. I KNOW how stressful insurance/financial stuff can be. If you get stuck, maybe the state insurance commissioner's office would be able to give you some information.

Lumpectomy 4/09, TCH 4/09-8/09, Rads 8/09-10/09 Herceptin 4/09-3/10,Tamoxifen 10/09 - 10/12. Cervical polyp from Tamox, had D&C - benign. Now on Arimidex 10/12. Total hysterectomy 4/13 Dx 3/2/2009, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Apr 12, 2011 05:38PM texaslonghorn31 wrote:

Thanks so much to you both for your posts. And the Obama care thing I believe is only currently in effect for minors, not adults, though hopefully adults will be added next year. If I do become unemployed I will for sure stay on COBRA eventhough it is expensive it is still cheaper than medical bills!

Dx 7/10/2010, DCIS, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/0 nodes
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Apr 12, 2011 06:21PM lago wrote:

texaslonghorn. As folks have mentioned as long as your insurance is continuous (no break for more than about a month) then you can go on another group plan. As far as individual plan I do believe you will be denied.

I was on cobra but it was about to run out before my last chemo. I called BC&BS of Illinois and they said cancer is a non-insurable condition. BUT I am on my state's high risk pool insurance instead. The premiums charge is by age not condition.

This is a list of states with high risk pool insurance: linky 

Texas link ((888) 398-3927) is here: linky

NOTE: it does say 12 month waiting period but I do believe that is only for people who don't have continuous coverage. If you apply now for when your cobra runs out you will not have to wait the 12 months. In Illinois it was 6 month waiting period but I did not have to wait because there was no lapse in my health insurance.

 hope that makes sense.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 12, 2011 09:51PM texaslonghorn31 wrote:

Lago..... THANK YOU so very much for that information! I will most certainly keep that handy! I still have great coverage through my job... but again, the job may be going away soon and while I know I will get another one at some point, I will need to maintain the COBRA.

Thanks again all!

Dx 7/10/2010, DCIS, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/0 nodes
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Apr 12, 2011 09:56PM jan508 wrote:

Not sure how it works but I did ask my insurer (CIGNA) if my BC would be a pre existing condition if I needed to apply for different insurance in the future.

They told me as long as I was 'treatment free' for 12 months it is not considered a pre existing condition.

As far as Obama care it only covers those under 17 or 18 years of age now. Not sure if adults are included in the future.

Jan

Dx 8/6/2010, ILC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 12, 2011 10:02PM lago wrote:

jan Obama care kicks in for adults in 2013 unless it's repealed. Also be careful regarding "treatment free" If you are on a hormone sucking or hormone blocking (Als or tamoxifen) then you are still being treated for BC.
DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 12, 2011 10:22PM texaslonghorn31 wrote:

Thanks lago.... so far I am on nothing... I refused Tamoxifin at this time as I was only at a 7% chance of getting cancer in the first place, and with it they told me it would only reduce the risk of getting it in the otehr breast by half... and being just newly 40 and not having gone through menopause, I didn't want to take it at this time for only a 3.5% chance of getting a recurrance.

Dx 7/10/2010, DCIS, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/0 nodes
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Apr 12, 2011 10:30PM lago wrote:

texas you might also be in a better situation with insurance classification being stage 0 DCIS.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 12, 2011 10:37PM texaslonghorn31 wrote:

Lago - I sure hope so!

Does anyone know how long you have to be considered NED before cancer is NOT considered a pre-exisiting condition?

Dx 7/10/2010, DCIS, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/0 nodes

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