For many years, older Americans have experienced the hardships of finding an insurer willing to provide coverage for older individuals. In 2008, 26% of those ages 55 to 64 applying for insurance were denied coverage, according to data from America’s Health Insurance Plans, a trade group. Because of this, many older Americans have been forced to make the tough choice of retiring at an older age to hold on to their health insurance from an employer, or retire uninsured and wait for Medicare to kick in.
Seeking coverage in the individual insurance market has been no walk in park for this group. The healthcare costs for a 64-year-old on average are nearly five times as much as a 21-year-old which makes insurers wary of providing coverage to older Americans. Discriminatory insurance practices such as increasing pricing and denying coverage for seniors have complicated matters for many.
So what is an older adult to do?
The implementation of the Affordable Care Act has made a huge impact and difference for the 55-64 age population. Now, older Americans can no longer be denied coverage by insurance companies for pre-existing conditions. The law also limits the amount insurers can charge older enrollees to three times the amount charged for younger participants. In addition, premiums and subsidies from the government will help to ensure that people can afford to pay for their coverage.
Recent enrollment numbers have already shown adults ages 55-64 were the most heavily represented in the signups, accounting for 33 percent of the total. Now older adults have affordable options to choose from without being denied. While this may be a victory for older Americans, choosing the right insurance can be a daunting, overwhelming task. GoHealthInsurance offers licensed advisors at no cost, that can recommend and help consumers such as older Americans choose a plan that fits their lifestyle and needs whether they are close to retirement or seeking insurance outside of their employer. GoHealth licensed advisors can also see if individuals qualify for tax credits and apply them to your coverage, ensuring that the most cost effective and beneficial plan is obtained. To compare health insurance options or speak with a licensed advisor, visit the www.GoHealthInsurance.com.