Affordable Care Act Insurance Changes For Women

There have been many changes and reconfigurations made due to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, or ACA. One of the things the ACA has done is to level the playing field for women buying their insurance. Many essential services for women that were not previously covered are now required benefits, and that can mean better health and big savings for a lot of American women. Here is a look at a few of the new benefits.

No More Pre-Existing Condition Exclusions

While this benefit is not specifically geared toward women, the pre-existing condition exclusions sometimes had bigger effects on women than men. Women seek medical attention at far higher rates than men, which results in early diagnosis of many chronic conditions. If those women diagnosed with chronic conditions then switched insurance providers, coverage for their chronic condition could be denied. Pregnancy was sometimes considered a pre-existing condition by some insurance companies, and coverage could be denied if the pregnancy was dated as beginning prior to insurance coverage, whether the woman knew about it or not. After the ACA, pre-existing conditions are no longer a basis for denial of health insurance coverage. 

Maternity Care Is Now a Required Benefit

Many insurance plans did not offer maternity, postpartum, or newborn care plans prior to the ACA. That meant the birth of a new baby could set a family back around $30,000 for an uncomplicated birth, and $50,000 if complications arose. For some families, that is more than an entire year's wages. Now, insurance plans are required to offer benefits for maternity, postpartum, and newborn services, as well as pediatric care. Women and children have access to more health care coverage than ever before.

No More Premium Hikes for Being Female

Prior to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, it was lawful for insurance programs to charge women up to 150% the premiums men were charged. That's a one third increase in premium costs just for being female. Now, insurance programs must maintain premium prices that are the same for both men and women.

The ACA remains a divisive issue in the United States, but there can be little doubt that it has made insurance coverage more female friendly, and has helped many women obtain the insurance coverage, such as from Bailey Insurance Services, they need. With fair premiums, better coverage for woman-specific conditions, and the erasure of the pre-existing condition exclusion, women's healthcare is becoming more accessible and affordable than ever before.