Re: [MOL] DIANE - insurance question [00565] Medicine On Line


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Re: [MOL] DIANE - insurance question




Dear Kathy Q,

Thank you so much for your response. I have checked
into the COBRA plan and how much it would be for me
when I quit or when this contract ends. Yes, it is 
rather expensive but not as expensive as going to
someone else. I am not having any treatment now and
have been told I am cancer free so hopefully I won't
have a problem getting insurance with another company.
I am going to try and get another job before quitting
this one and make sure I am accepted for the insurance
as well. Thanks for the tip about calling them. I will
make sure I do that. If there is any more advice you
can give me I would appreciate it.

Thanks again

Your friend,
Diane 
--- Qksk@AOL.COM wrote:
> Hi Diane,
> 
> An insurance response from a different Kathy.  I
> spent several years in the 
> Human Resources field and this is what I know about
> changing insurances (at 
> least in California).  
> 
> You usually have the option when you leave a company
> of converting your 
> current plan for a period of time (usually 18
> months) under the C.O.B.R.A. 
> law.  When you do this you have to pay 100% of the
> premium.  Although you do 
> pay 100% of the premium, the good news is you stay
> at whatever the group rate 
> is that your employer had negotiated with the
> carrier.  So often it's cheaper 
> than it would be if you had to negotiate a
> comparable individual policy.
> 
> This can work as a bridge for you while you are
> securing the next insurance 
> plan to be sure any cancer treatments are covered.
> 
> About the new insurance.  Often HMO's don't have
> pre-existing condition 
> exclusions, so that's one thing to check with a new
> employer.  Even if an HMO 
> isn't your first choice, often if you start on the
> HMO you can switch to a 
> different plan at your company's "open enrollment"
> period and not be saddled 
> with any pre-existing condition exclusions.  If an
> HMO is not an option, a 
> common thing is the insurance company will cover you
> but exclude coverage for 
> the pre-existing condintion until either a certain
> amount of time has passed, 
> or a certain amount of time treatment free has
> passed.  That depends on the 
> health plan.   In this case, by continuing under
> COBRA your treatments are 
> covered while you're waiting for the pre-existing
> condition time exclusion 
> period to pass.  It's an expensive choice, but maybe
> cheaper in the long run 
> than having to pay out of pocket.  That's a call
> you'd have to make.
> 
> Even though it's totally illegal, some smaller
> companies might let a 
> pre-existing condition influence their hiring
> decision.  For this reason, I 
> recommend that you ask a prospective employer for
> the contact number for 
> their insurance company(s) and ask your questions
> directly and anonymously.  
> If the HR person is curious, you can just tell them
> you want to compare 
> policies as you make the decision whether or not to
> give up your C.O.B.R.A 
> policy with the other company.  After all, it's the
> truth.
> 
> My company never allowed a pre-existing condition
> influence a hiring 
> decision, but those we hired told me some
> disheartening stories about other 
> employers.  So I say better safe than sorry.
> 
> Hope this helps!
> 
> Your friend, Kathy Q.
> 
>
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