Ask an Expert: Pregnancy, Coverage for Kids, and Health Reform
A few weeks ago, the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative hosted an informative Facebook chat with MomsRising about the Affordable Care Act. Here are a few commonly asked questions on pregnancy, kids, and health reform, with expert answers and resources from Ashley Wheeland from the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative.
What if I get pregnant then lose my job and health coverage?
Ashley: Depending on why you lost your job you can maintain your insurance because of a law known as COBRA for a certain amount of time. However employees have to pay for the costs of the insurance, which can be somewhat pricy. Depending on your family income you may also be able to qualify for Medicaid, which covers pregnant women in every state. Check out these resources for additional information:
- Health Plans & Benefits: Continuation of Health Coverage--COBRA
- What special Medicaid coverage is available to Women
- Medicaid State Information
If you are married, you may have access to special enrollment through your spouse's plan. See 'Typical Questions About Special Enrollment' from the US Dept of Labor website.
If you are under age 26, you may be eligible to enroll with your parents existing plan. Check out opportunities to re-enroll on the CMS website. To enroll in a new individual health plan, check out this tutorial.
I'm on Medicaid and pregnant. After I have my baby, will she or he be on Medicaid too? What's my next step to get my baby covered?
Ashley: Yes your baby would get coverage under Medicaid is the mother is. This ensures babies get the health care checks they need, and mother's get the assistance and advice they need to provide important infant care. Studies show infants need consistent care to ensure they grow into healthy kids. Visit www.cms.gov for more information on Medicaid.
Will I be able to buy my child health insurance even if he or she has a pre-existing condition?
Ashley: Yes - insurers cannot deny coverage for preexisting conditions for children starting with the passage of the law in 2010, for adults in 2014. This is vital to giving Americans the piece of mind that they can get the health care coverage the need. Check out Thanks Obamacare for more benefits of the ACA.