I had breast cancer last year and luckily I'm now cancer free. I have a question about health insurance. I'm on a 1-year contract position with an organization that offers health insurance benefits. For the past several months before this position, I was paying the premium on my own health insurance. Now, I'm thinking of cancelling the insurance I was paying but I wonder if in a year I'll have a hard time getting my own coverage again due to having had cancer? Or if the premiums would be super high? I will probably reach out to a health insurance provider for input but wondering what people here have experienced… thanks!
Congratulations on cancer free! I don't have experience with this and I think your idea of consulting with the professional is a good one. I hope someone chimes in with some info for you in the meantime.
Possibly our Cancer Information Helpline may be able to guide you to that info as well. They are at 1-888-939-3333.
Best of luck
@Lianne_Moderator Hi Lianne, thanks for telling me about the information hotline, I will reach out to them too.
I would encourage you to keep the health insurance you had before your cancer diagnosis.
Based on my inquiries with several insurance companies and hearing other people’s experiences, there are restrictions and reduced coverage for people who have/had cancer.
With a new health insurance policy, any claim associated with a medical problem that could be even remotely connected to your cancer diagnosis, such as a possible side effect of treatments, for example, would probably be denied.
***However, with your current insurance policy, that claim would be assessed without cancer as a pre-existing condition and probably approved because the insurance policy was initiated prior to your cancer diagnosis.***
Consulting a professional is a good idea and highly recommended. Try to make it a neutral 3rd party, a professional not associated with your current health insurance company and not a prospective insurance company you may be considering for new health insurance.
In addition to following up with the information @Lianne provided, a medication reimbursement specialist at an oncology clinic or hospital pharmacy may be able to advise you on this. They are very well-informed with insurance-related issues.
MissKitty, I am happy to read that you are cancer-free and I wish you all the best in the future.
@MissKitty, I started with a new employer in Sept of 2021 and was diagnosed April 2022. Their insurance company put me through the wringer because I had only been there 7 months and not a full year, even though they only required 13 weeks of continuous full time work to be approved. They just made it more difficult. I was finally approved for long term disability 2 months after it was supposed to kick in. Their spiel was they had to be certain it wasn’t a recurrence and also had to be sure I didn’t have it when I was first hired. It was so painful and stressful, waiting to be approved and treated like I was lying about how long I knew I had cancer for. Now if I get through this cancer, I am terrified what will happen if it recurs. I don’t think I will ever be able to leave this employer now.
Please continue with whatever policy you currently have,it is a peace of mind if your cancer comes back. Which of course, I hope does not and congrats on being cancer free! 😀
@MissKitty Keep your private plan…part of the cost will be offset by not having to pay premiums into the group plan.