Bennet: Coloradans with Pre-existing Conditions Can Now Get Health Insurance

Bennet Applauds Health Insurance Option for Coloradans with Pre-existing Conditions

Washington, DC – Michael Bennet, U.S. Senator for Colorado, today applauded the establishment of Colorado’s new Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) to provide a health insurance option for Coloradans who are denied coverage for a pre-existing condition.  Starting today, Coloradans can apply for coverage through GettingUSCovered, a program being administered by Rocky Mountain Health Plans (RMHP), a nonprofit organization based in Grand Junction.

“Before this bill, I heard from many Coloradans who couldn’t get insurance because of a pre-existing condition—Coloradans like Skip Guarini of Parker, to name just one, whose story I shared on the floor of the Senate,” said Bennet.  “Now, thanks to health reform, Coloradans with pre-existing conditions will have easier access to the care they need.  This program will provide much-needed coverage and peace of mind for Coloradans who had to go without insurance and had to worry about how to pay for each doctor’s visit.”

The Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan will provide a new health coverage option for Americans who have been uninsured for at least six months, have been unable to get health coverage because of a health condition, and are a U.S. citizen or are residing in the United States legally.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has contracted with RMHP to administer GettingUSCovered.  RMHP is also working with CoverColorado, a nonprofit organization that helps provide comprehensive health coverage to Coloradans with pre-existing conditions, and Express Scripts, a pharmacy benefit manager, to help administer the program.

Created under the Affordable Care Act, the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan is a transitional program until 2014, when insurers will be permanently banned by law from discriminating against adults with pre-existing conditions, and individuals and small businesses will have access to more affordable private insurance choices through new competitive Exchanges. In 2014, Members of Congress will also purchase their insurance through Exchanges.

To read the full transcript of Bennet’s floor speech, in which he shared Skip’s story, please click here.