Guardian: Millions of Americans who have survived Covid-19 or face future infections could lose their insurance or be barred from getting coverage should the Trump administration successfully repeal Obamacare.
The Trump administration asked the supreme court late Thursday to overturn the Affordable Care Act – a move that, if successful, would bring a permanent end to the health insurance reform law popularly known as Obamacare.
Under the ACA, insurance companies cannot deny coverage for pre-existing conditions. Its abolition would mean millions of Americans who have had or have cancer, multiple sclerosis or other diseases would struggle to find insurance.
Anyone applying for insurance who subsequently contracts Covid-19 could also find their insurance invalidated or be denied coverage in the future. If they were allowed to keep their insurance, they could still be charged higher premiums or have future treatment for coronavirus turned down.
“Abolishing the ACA would cause tremendous damage and cause chaos throughout the country,” said Karen Pollitz, senior fellow at the Henry J Kaiser Family Foundation.
Anyone buying health insurance who subsequently contracted the coronavirus would face loss of coverage, she said. “If you bought the insurance and then caught the virus, you would be out of luck,” she said.
The abolition of pre-existing condition coverage is especially difficult for those who have has Covid-19, because so little is known about the long-term health impact of the disease. There is evidence that the respiratory illness causes permanent damage in some patients. Those who have had the disease and recovered would have to disclose their status to apply for insurance, and could be turned down for coverage.
“We could see tens of millions of people thrown out of coverage,” said Pollitz. “There would be an onslaught of un-insurance.” read more…