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Health Insurance Coverage Changes

Effective 1/1/2011

  • No more rescissions: Insurers will no longer be allowed to revoke patients' coverage after they become sick.
  • No more lifetime limits on coverage: Insurance policies will no longer be allowed to include lifetime dollar limits on coverage -- so a person who becomes seriously ill won't "run out" of insurance.
  • Higher annual limits on coverage: Plans will still be allowed to place annual dollar limits on coverage, but those annual limits must be at least $750,000.
  • Ban on denying coverage to children based on pre-existing conditions: Insurers will no longer be able to exclude children age 18 and under from health insurance plans based on pre-existing conditions.
  • Young adults can stay on their parents' plans: Young adults will now be allowed to remain on their parents' health insurance until age 26 if they are not offered health care by their employer.
  • Free preventive care: New policies must cover preventive care -- such as immunizations, mammograms and colonoscopies -- without charging a deductible or co-payment.
  • Access to ob-gyns: Women must be allowed to see in-network ob-gyns in their plans without needing a referral from a primary care doctor.
  • Access to emergency care: Insurers cannot charge customers more for using out-of-network emergency room services, or require people to get pre-authorization for emergency care.
  • New appeals process: Insurers have to implement new, more consumer-friendly claims appeals processes.