What happens with Insurance if laid off?

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Cokeman
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 11/1/2009 2:49 PM (GMT -7)   
I know this is probably not the best place to ask, but I don't know where to go to find out. 2 months ago I had a a scope done. Right section of Colon is so inflamed it is half the size it should be. Had a upper GI & lower bowel test done (drank the barium) I think those were the test. Any way test results show a partial blockage in the small intestine, & a black spot on my stomach, that I still have to find out what that is. My Dr, doesn't think it's Chrohn's, but said a scope would have to be done to find out. He has me on the Predisone, Immurane, & Flagyl.
My Dr. thinks with the amount of inflammation in my colon that the standard predisone, immurane treatment isn't enough. I've had the skin test done & the chest X-ray, to be able to start Remicade treatments. I see my dr. the 3rd to find out when those will start.

Here is my issue & where I am worried. this past monday I almost got laid off. I was the last on the list & just was fortunate to not get the lay off. However I am now the first on the list if my work has another lay off. How will this effect my insurance? I can draw unemployment until I find another job, but I can't find insurance that quickly. There is no way I can afford to take the remicade if I don't have insurance & laid off.

If I do get laid off, & I find another job that offers insurance. Will my Crohn's be considered a pre-existing condition & not be covered?

Please if anyone knows where to get this information let me know. It is stressing me out causing issues over the past few days.
Sorry for such a long post. I just wanted to make sure I covered everything that I thought may be effected by me possibly loosing my Insurance.
Crohn's since 1997, treated with Sulfasalazine, Imuran, & Predisone.
In Remission for 11 years with no medication.
2009 Crohn's returns, Current Medication 40mg Predisone, 100mg Imuran, 1000mg Flagyl
3 Stool Softner's, 3 tsp Mineral Oil, Pro-Biotic Acidophilus
Blessed & Thankful it's not worse....


onedaymore
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 111
   Posted 11/1/2009 3:18 PM (GMT -7)   
You are eligible for COBRA if you are laid off. You will have to pay the premium yourself, up to 102%, with no assistance from your company, but it is so worth it if you can't get on another plan right away. You can continue COBRA coverage for up to 36 months. Since you are still on the same insurance plan, it won't count as a pre-existing condition.

If you do find another job that offers insurance and jump from COBRA or your current coverage to a new plan, so long as there are no gaps in coverage (I think it has to be under 60 days, but you'll have to look it up to be sure), they should not be able to stick you with the pre-existing condition clause.
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 2008 at the age of 22.
Currently taking: Azathioprine, tramadol, welchol, promethazine
Surgeries: Cholecystectomy (2007)


pillpopper
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 209
   Posted 11/1/2009 3:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Cokeman,
I'd be starting a job search as soon as possible, and investigating local healthcare
packages asap. Some companies extend health coverage if you have some kind of
exit package.Hopefully whatever job you do is in high demand, and you can work
elsewhere.I'm sure the medical problems will will be solved and hope Remicade goes
well for you.
B-12injections,Pentasa,Loperamide,Entocort,6mp,Hydrochlorothiazide,8 week
Remicade,vitamin-D,Fluconazole.More over the counter vitamin-D. Remission since surgery and 5-years, of 8-week Remicade.
.


medchrt1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 517
   Posted 11/1/2009 3:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Cobra will go into effect but you need to do it...so investigate Cobra...I believe it will get you through 6 months, if you were laid off lack of work for instance (and not for something else). After the 6 months your Cobra will expire and you will be without insurance. Perhaps someone has a more accurate answer.

pimfram
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 506
   Posted 11/1/2009 3:41 PM (GMT -7)   
COBRA is pretty much the only way you'd be getting insurance, if you can't get a job or the new job has a waiting period. It's spendy, though. I pay $500 per month for mine.
Diagnosed with CD July 2007
Currently on Remicade, Imuran, probiotics, folic acid, multivitamin.

Amor fati - Nietzsche


Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 11/1/2009 3:55 PM (GMT -7)   
When my husband changed jobs, there was a waiting period until his new coverage kicked in. We had to sign up for COBRA, but we didn't have to pay for it unless we actually used it. Since I was basically in remission at the time and we knew ahead of time what was going on, I was able to pre-fill my scripts. We were lucky our kids stayed healthy and we didn't need any sick visits. So, if you can find a new job quickly you might not need to pay for it, But basically this would be the only way to cover yourself against the pre-existing condition. If I were you I would be looking for a new job ASAP. And whatever you do, if you do get laid off, sign up for COBRA.

Also, there are assistance programs from the makers of most drugs, so if the worst case happens, you might be able to work something out to help with the co-pays and stuff.
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


njmom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1884
   Posted 11/1/2009 5:00 PM (GMT -7)   

IMPORTANT - IF you are laid off before December 31, 2009, then Obama's federal stimulus package means that you will have to pay ONLY 35% of your COBRA premium for nine months after being laid off.

Your adjustable gross income must be under $125,000 if single and less than $250,000 if married filing a joint return.

http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/cobra.html

http://insurance.oregon.gov/FAQs/federal-stimulus-cobra-faq.html#subsidywork

COBRA is available for up to 18 months (see below)

http://74.125.93.132/search?q=cache:wJ03KaCMddcJ:www.compuquotes.com/insurance-definition-cobra.html+definition+of+COBRa&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

The following offers tips on what to do if you lose your job:

http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/Seven_Ways_Job_3-16-09-FINAL-A.pdf

 

 


Cokeman
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 11/1/2009 5:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Oh wow. thank you so much for the information. I'm going to check in to the Cobra first thing tomorrow so I know what i need to have. the wife is curently having some health issues as well, so we really have to maintain our insurance.
@njmom, thank you for those links. That will get me started. Again thanks for all the info.
Crohn's since 1997, treated with Sulfasalazine, Imuran, & Predisone.
In Remission for 11 years with no medication.
2009 Crohn's returns, Current Medication 40mg Predisone, 100mg Imuran, 1000mg Flagyl
3 Stool Softner's, 3 tsp Mineral Oil, Pro-Biotic Acidophilus
Blessed & Thankful it's not worse....


Becky77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1768
   Posted 11/1/2009 6:03 PM (GMT -7)   
I thought it changed and COBRA could be active for up to 3 years...not that anyone would want to pay for it for so long...I'm on it right now to get me through school, and I'm paying about $150 a month, which isn't too bad considering without the stimulus it would be much more.

If you do lose your job (I hope not) your employer automatically should send you paperwork about COBRA and how to go forward. It usually takes a couple months, but you can continue to use your insurance if needed.

Good luck!
Becky

31 yr old female-dx with Crohn's in '97 after emergency resection and appendectomy, 2nd resection '05, Bilateral pulmonary emboli 10/09
Currently on Humira, Omeprazole, Effexor, Seroquel, Calcium, Vit D, sublingual B12, Coumadin


GDen
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 703
   Posted 11/1/2009 6:57 PM (GMT -7)   
I think I remember reading that if COBRA was too expensive you could just get an individual policy instead. Either way, it's important to not let there be a lapse. I recommend discussing with a health insurance agent. The two I spoke with were enormously helpful and really knew what they were talking about.

Jenn4dex
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 494
   Posted 11/2/2009 10:44 AM (GMT -7)   
I was laid off 5 months ago! I pay COBRA but if you are laid off your cobra is like 1/2 of what cobra would normally be. Pres Obama signed this new legislation because of so many people losing their jobs that this be passed and you will receive the paperwork and you apply and you will have insurance at a much better rate. Don't worry, I"ve been through it! If you have any questions, let me know!
Jenn


Jennifer
Diagnosed Crohns 1/06
CD of Terminal Ileum
Taking Pentasa. Adverse reactions to Remicade. B12 Injections.  Tried Humira, had adverse reactions as well.  Trying to figure out what's next!

HabsHockeyFan
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 3130
   Posted 11/2/2009 1:08 PM (GMT -7)   
In addition to the 18 months of COBRA available to you at your cost, please remember to get a "certificate of creditable coverage". This will come from the carrier of your COBRA when you end that. That cert should then be presented to whatever carrier you get after COBRA to show you had continuous coverage. That is how you avoid the pitfall of pre-existing limitations
Dx'd '90 (emergency rupture), symptoms ignored long before that, '03 fistulas and bad flagyl reactions, B12 weekly, Pentasa [until I surrender to the bigger meds]
I'm riding on the escalator of life....


onedaymore
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 111
   Posted 11/2/2009 7:38 PM (GMT -7)   
GDen said...
I think I remember reading that if COBRA was too expensive you could just get an individual policy instead.


I've been on COBRA for almost a year now, and it's actually not expensive (at least my plan isn't!). I pay only $130 a month for medical, dental, AND vision coverage -- this is not with Obama's discount, either. It's definitely worth it to check into, even with the preconception that it's too expensive to afford. You might be surprised!
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 2008 at the age of 22.
Currently taking: Azathioprine, tramadol, welchol, promethazine
Surgeries: Cholecystectomy (2007)


GDen
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 703
   Posted 11/3/2009 12:09 PM (GMT -7)   
onedaymore said...
I pay only $130 a month for medical, dental, AND vision coverage

Sounds like GREAT health insurance! I pay more than that, and it doesn't include regular dental or vision.

Is there anything in the stimulus plans that includes help for non-COBRA health insurance (e.g. individual plans)?

Homeboy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 637
   Posted 11/3/2009 9:12 PM (GMT -7)   
HabsHockeyFan said...
In addition to the 18 months of COBRA available to you at your cost, please remember to get a "certificate of creditable coverage". This will come from the carrier of your COBRA when you end that. That cert should then be presented to whatever carrier you get after COBRA to show you had continuous coverage. That is how you avoid the pitfall of pre-existing limitations


This should keep you safe.

If the insurance company is paying your medical bills right now, you should be ok, but I can't say that for certain, since your signature says your CD dx was in 1997.

You need to get a copy of your insurance policy, and your employee handbook, the answers to what is and what is not considered pre-existing will be found in there. Any questions you have about pre-existing are in those two documents, and NO PLACE ELSE!!! You can get both from your human resource department, or you can write the insurance company and ask for a copy of the summary plan description. www.dol.gov/dol/topic/health-plans/planinformation.htm

If you are safe there, if they are paying your medical bills right now, and they don't consider your CD to be pre-existing right now, then you should be able to take that with you to another job. It should carry over into cobra without any pre-existing issues, as long as you get that certificate of coverage.
Humira 2 times a month.
Lialda 2 X day
Imuran 200mg day
Phenergen PRN
Remeron 30mg day
Pain Meds


dcham1
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 11/5/2009 3:07 PM (GMT -7)   
Don't count on the Health Care Bill that is current in congress. This will NOT help people like us with pre-existing conditions and no health insurance company will cover you.
Contact your senators and congressmen to support ANY IBD legislation. We need all the help we can get to combat this disease.


DebbieCrohns
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 174
   Posted 11/6/2009 9:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Dcham1,
 
From what I've read, the health care bill that is in Congress will not allow refusal of coverage due to preexisting conditions.  Have you read otherwise?  If so, where?
 
Thanks.
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