In Georgia, state laws protect your access to healthcare even if you get sick or would not otherwise have ready access to health care. Here’s a rundown on current scenarios in Georgia’s health care system.
Group Health Plans
There is such a thing nondiscrimination in a group health plan, which means that if you are covered under a company-backed policy, you cannot be denied or be limited in your access to healthcare because of you health status. You also cannot be made to pay more because of your current state of being.
Similarly, if you are a small company trying to buy group health insurance, you cannot be turned down because of any factor that may affect the use of health services by anyone in your company. Therefore, you as an employer should be sold health plan on a guaranteed basis.
As it is, Georgia limits health insurance carriers from excluding pre-existing conditions. Of course, there are rules on what can be counted as a pre-existing condition and how long anyone must wait before a new plan begins to pay for the care of that condition. In general, if you have a new plan, your old coverage can be credited as the exclusion period of your pre-existing condition under certain conditions.
If for any reason you lost your fully insured group health plan, you have the right to buy an individual health insurance from the same company that provided the group coverage, provided that you were fully covered for six months under that group plan.
However, there are conversion policies and you can be charged premiums. Thankfully, you do not have to be slapped with a new exclusion period for pre-existing conditions.
Health Insurance Between Jobs
Even after you leave your job, you still remain in your employer’s group health plan for a period of time, which is called COBRA or state continuation coverage. This continuation helps if you are waiting for a new health plan or are between jobs.
Low To Modest Income Health Insurance
If you can’t afford health insurance, you may qualify for free health coverage or a subsidized plan. Georgia’s Medicaid program offers free health care for pregnant women, low-income families, and elderly or disabled individuals with little or no income. Median income families in Atlanta can opt for private family health insurance programs readily available in the market.
Cancer Treatment For The Uninsured Or Underinsured
If you are at risk for cancer but do not have health insurance or are underinsured, you may still avail of screening and treatment under the Georgia Cancer Screening
Program, which provides free screening for qualified Georgians. Some women diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer may qualify for Medicaid through this program.