Thursday, January 12, 2012

Texas Health Insurance: Children Caught In The War Over Healthcare

Posted by Sarah Sweetz Akhza at 10:58 PM
Texas Health Insurance: Children Caught In The War Over Healthcare

Texas has the lowest percentage of residents protected by health insurance in the entire country. Only one in four have any form of Texas health insurance at all. Media coverage has been scant regarding the future of more than half a million Americans who have been through bankruptcy court, largely due to medical bills. So, what will the future look like for Texas?


Although the rest of the industrialized world has left "for-profit" health insurance behind, every Texas Republican in the U.S. Congress voted no on the healthcare reform that could protect the vast majority of Texans with access to medical care.


Nevertheless, children in Texas have just gained coverage under their parents' Texas insurance plans until their 26th birthday. Those in the next generation who suffer from pre-existing conditions like asthma finally won the right to healthcare when insurers were barred from refusing to cover these children.


If you get health insurance quotes in Texas right now, you can protect your children under your plan regardless of any pre-existing condition they may have.

Fewer people are finding health insurance in Texas through employment now, but you can keep your young adult children on your own plan until their 26th birthday.

Health Insurance In Texas Has More For Adults


Even adults without growing families got something when healthcare reform kicked in this fall. Insurers can no longer limit the amount of coverage you receive over a lifetime. If you got a new plan after healthcare reform passed, your insurer cannot charge you higher out-of-network rates for emergency medical treatment, either.


Because too many people were not getting regular preventive care, like cancer screenings and vaccinations, insurers are now required to cover recommended preventive care without any co-pay charges. The catch is that you have to get a new plan after the passage of healthcare.


If you are thinking about looking into new plans for the extra coverage, you may see higher premiums when you run health insurance quotes in Texas now. Weigh that against what it would cost you to pay for preventive care out of your own pocket before you make a decision. Most importantly, do not cancel your old policy until your new Texas health insurance is effective. Adults with pre-existing conditions will not be guaranteed coverage until 2014!


Can The U.S. Afford Health Insurance For Texas?


If you were part of the middle class in 2000 earning between ,000 and ,000, you gave the same share of your income to the IRS as the people who made more than million. Tax breaks for the wealthiest in the country just increased again in 2007.


In countries in Europe, residents may pay taxes as high as 50 percent of their income, but they are guaranteed free healthcare and a college education, including books. The people of Denmark were singled out in a Frontline documentary because more people there reported they were happy with state of their lives than people in any other country. Danes pay some of the highest taxes in the world, but they enjoy the security they feel and trust in their future.


In the U.S., states like Texas are waging war over healthcare, including expanding Medicaid to help people under 65 who are struggling with incomes at or below 133 percent of the federal poverty line. With the recession, Medicaid enrollment surged and that spending rose at the highest rate in eight years, according to the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation.


What Is The Future Of Texas Health Insurance Plans?


New requirements that will cover more adults in Texas are scheduled to kick in by 2014, such as the Texas health insurance state exchange. The idea there was to offer more citizens coverage similar to what those in Congress already enjoy. The federal government will provide the initial funding, but states like Texas will eventually have to maintain their exchanges.


After gaining ground in the November 2010 election, Texas Republicans proposed to drop out of the federal Medicaid program. What will happen to the 3.6 million children, people with disabilities and impoverished Texans now enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP?


This battle goes far beyond the state of Texas having to spend money to protect citizens with health insurance in Texas. Why would Republican state legislators try to deny Texans billions in federal tax dollars?

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