Guest Author - Jeanette Stingley
With the focus on health care in the political community, one subject has come to the surface that is outraging American people. If you experience domestic violence and go to the hospital or tell your doctor about the abuse in 1 of 9 states, you could have a label of pre-existing condition and hurt your chances of future insurance coverage from vendors.
These states are Idaho, Mississippi, North Dakota, North Carolina, Arkansas, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, and Wyoming. Washington D.C. is also on this list. To me this is blatant discrimination and can hinder justice against abusers in these states. In 2006, there was an attempt to end this ridiculous practice in these states. There was an amendment proposed by Sen. Patty Murray, a democrat from Washington, to help end this. The vote was 10 – 10 which meant the amendment failed. The 10 against were all Republicans. One of the republicans stated he voted against it because he felt putting more regulations on the insurance industry would make insurance premiums even higher then they are now.
This is one more thing to add to the long list of why women and men who are being beaten and abused are afraid to tell a doctor or go to the emergency room when they are injured. Victims can suffer a major injury and make long term health problems because of this fear which in the long run can create even more doctor bills for insurance companies and patients to pay for.
This whole dilema came to light when the National Women's Law Center did a research study comparing the gender gap when purchasing insurance. The results articles were titled "Nowhere to Turn: How the Individual Health Insurance Market Fails Women". Even though women are offered more benefits now compared to even 10 years ago, there is still a major difference in the kind of insurance available to women.
I rarely like what Keith Olbermann says but this clip sums up the practices and proposed parts of the new Health Care bills that are in the works now.
We need to take a stand, even if we don't live in these states. Writing to our congressmen and political leaders needs to be done now before this situation gets worse. As new information comes out about this, I will of course be writing about it here.