The passage of the new healthcare reform law brings good news for many people, including those living with disabilities. The changes dramatically affect who can get coverage and how much it will cost. All individuals and families will be required to have medical insurance and every effort will be made to make it accessible and affordable. Here are five ways in which disabled persons will benefit from new provisions within the healthcare law.
1. Fewer denials
One of the most notable changes is that no one will be denied health coverage based on pre-existing conditions. This news is especially good for differently abled people: previously, insurers could deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions or charge exorbitantly high premiums, making it difficult or impossible for those with disabilities to receive medical care. The new law also ensures that people who were previously denied or dropped based on their physical status will qualify for entry into high-risk pools to guarantee coverage.
2. No benefits caps
Insurers will no longer be able to impose annual or lifetime benefits caps, meaning there will be no dollar limit for covered care. Previously insurers could refuse to pay if insured individuals reached the annual dollar amount limit set forth by insurance companies. This forced the disabled to have to pay out of pocket for the rest of the year
3. Access to preventive care
Under the new law, disabled individuals who use Medicare will be afforded the opportunity to make free visits to their health care providers for preventive care. Patients will have access to visits with specialists and will be free of copayments or deductibles to pay. This change under the new healthcare law helps prevents issues that might occur as the result of a disability, as problems can be addressed before they become serious issues.
4. Cash benefits for assistance
Another plus comes in the form of receiving a cash benefit to help with any non-medical needs that may arise. After a five-year period where individuals opt for a payroll deduction into an insurance program, those with mobility limitations would be eligible to receive a cash benefit to help with acquiring caregiver assistance, wheelchair accessible vehicles, ramps, shower grab bars or any other specialty equipment that would make their daily lives easier.
5. Affordable prescriptions
The new healthcare law includes reduced prescription costs and Medicaid coverage for low-income individuals and families. This provision benefits the disabled who may live on limited incomes for any number of reasons. Rather than having to subsist without medical attention, including necessary medications, those with disabilities will now be able to receive affordable healthcare without fearing denial because of a physical, mental or emotional condition.
Healthcare reform will undoubtedly improve the quality of life for many, including families, low-income individuals and the disabled who once experienced denials from insurance providers or medical establishments. Persons who may have once avoided making doctor’s appointments or filling prescriptions can now take better care of themselves, ultimately leading to longer, happier and healthier lives.