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Health insurance reform may be held unconstitutional by the Supreme Court

Health insurance, is it on your mind? If it isn't it should be. President Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare.

On the very same day that the law was signed, 19 states joined Florida in filing suit against the law stating that the mandate is unconstitutional. Eventually, the number grew to 26 states co-filing and several individuals disputing the constitutionality of different aspects of the law.

What is at stake for women, and children is extensive and will have an effect on a large portion of the populations health, as well as ability to even secure health insurance. Under the law, people cannot be denied coverage with pre-existing conditions. This is particularly troubling for women, then for the elderly and children.

Prior to Obamacare, women could be (and were) denied coverage for such things as having c-sections. being raped, or reporting trauma suffered by domestic abuse. Think about a woman who suffered a rape earlier in her life, who switches employers at some point in her career. As she moves from one employer whose health insurance company covered her to another employer whose insurer will not, what is she to do? What about the recent 65-year-old male retiree who suffers from hypertension or COPD? What is he to do when his cobra runs out and he can no longer afford insurance on his limited income?

Before Obamacare, children aged out of their parents healthcare insurance at age 18,(some policies do cover them until 21 as long as are attending full time post secondary education). At that point, they must secure health insurance at their own costs. However, many will not be accepted due to pre-existing conditions. If a child received medical treatment for asthma, childhood obesity, type II diabetes, ADD, ADHD, eating disorders, and even some sports related injuries insurance companies can deny coverage for pre-existing conditions.

What is at stake for all taxpaying citizens is how much government can pay for the non-insured and under insured. Hospitals cannot deny emergency care regardless of your ability to pay. If the government will not subsidize the added costs then the hospitals are forced to stay profitable by spreading the increased costs of operation to the insured. In turn, the insurance companies will transfer that burden by increasing the premiums for individuals who qualify for insurance. The Supreme Court's ruling will have huge consequences for the health insurance industry, and the economy.


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