With the ever increasing cost of medical care in this country it is more important than ever for us to have health insurance. Back in 1996 a law was passed that gives workers and their families more rights and a great deal of protection in regards to health insurance. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA for short. This article is going to give a brief overview of some of the more important points of this law.
HIPAA protects workers and their families in a number of different ways. This law protects your health insurance coverage if you lose your job or if you move from one job to another. In the past changing employers may have meant going without health insurance coverage and now that coverage is protected. This law also provides special enrollment rights for people that lose their coverage due to factors such as divorce, the death of the primary policyholder, etc.
Another important part of this law is that it limits exclusions for pre-existing medical conditions. A group health plan may refuse to provide benefits related to a pre-existing condition for 12 months. However, if an individual had health insurance prior to enrolling in a new plan the duration of this exclusion can be reduced.
The above rights and more are covered under Title I of HIPAA. Title II of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is known as the administrative simplification provisions and under this part of the law a set of national standards were set regarding healthcare transactions for providers, health insurance plans, and employers. This puts limits on the information in your medical records that can be shared with your insurance company and your employer. It also helps to prevent health care fraud and abuse of the system.
This is been just a brief overview of some of the benefits that America’s workers have gained because of this law. You can get a lot more information about the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act