Missouri cuts high-risk health insurance pool rates_________________________________________________________________________________
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
After a lower-than-expected turnout for Missouri's new high-risk health insurance pool, the state has dropped the rates by 25 percent.
The insurance pool created by the federal health care overhaul was funded for 1,000 applicants its first year, and about 250 people have signed up since July.
Each state received funds last year to create a high-risk insurance pool for uninsured people with pre-existing medical conditions who were unable to afford or obtain coverage on their own. It's estimated that 10 to 15 percent of Americans do not receive health insurance through their employers, Medicare or Medicaid. People who are self-employed, work for small companies or are otherwise uninsured have reported problems with qualifying for private health insurance because of their medical histories.
The pools are intended to fill the gap until 2014, when insurance companies will no longer be allowed to deny or overcharge people for coverage because of pre-existing conditions.
There are now three available plans with comprehensive coverage and varying deductibles. The new rates, from $178 to $780 a month depending on age and deductible, take effect Feb. 1.
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