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Changing Health Insurance

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bradsap:
I have a question that is making me lose a lot of sleep. I'm sure it is different for everyone, but if u have dealt with a similar situation, I would appreciate hearing how u handled it.

I'm unemployed (still debating whether to apply for disability or not) and my COBRA insurance will be running out in a few months.  Is it even possible to get individual insurance without HIV/AIDS being classified as a pre-existing condition?  I have a substantial savings account, but at $2,000/month for my meds -- my life savings will disappear all too quickly.

  ???  How should I handle this -- who should I turn to get specific info/help for my situation?  doctor? case worker?

Brad

Sdgirl:
Brad,

As long as you have had continual coverage (and Cobra counts) and NO lapses in coverage, you can purchase an individual plan with a pre-existing condition.  If you had a lapse in coverage, you would have to wait 6 months to obtain treatment for your pre-existing condition.

Hope this helps!

Lisa

gerry:
Lisa is correct about the pre-existing condition rule which should not apply as long as you can demonstrate no lapses in insurance coverage.  You should still however consider talking to a case-worker to explore your options.  Your substantial savings account might disqualify you from getting help, for instance, through Ryan White/ADAP, but that would depend on which state you are in.  It would have been ideal if you had applied for disability because if that was approved, you could extend your COBRA eligibility I think by another 11 months.  Not sure if that would count now because I think the rule is you would need to have been declared disabled within the first 2 months of being eligible for COBRA for the extension to apply.  But that might be something else to ask the case worker about to verify.  Good luck.

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