Under the ACA, insurance companies cannot deny coverage for pre-existing conditions. Abolishing it would mean that millions of Americans who have had or have cancer, multiple sclerosis or other illnesses would be hard pressed to find insurance.Anyone who takes out insurance and subsequently contracts Covid-19 may also have their insurance invalidated or denied coverage in the future. If they were allowed to keep their insurance, they could still be charged higher premiums or denied future treatment for the coronavirus.
“Abolishing the ACA would cause enormous damage and create chaos across the country,” said Karen Pollitz, research fellow at the Henry J Kaiser Family Foundation.
Anyone purchasing health insurance who subsequently contracted the coronavirus would incur a loss of coverage, she said. “If you bought insurance and then caught the virus, you would be unlucky,” she said.
Abolishing coverage for preexisting conditions is particularly difficult for those with Covid-19, as little is known about the long-term health impact of the disease. There is evidence that respiratory disease causes permanent damage in some patients. Those who have had the illness and have recovered should disclose their status to apply for insurance and may be denied coverage.
“We could see tens of millions of people excluded from coverage,” said Pollitz. “There would be an assault on non-insurance. ”
Donald Trump said he would maintain protections for people with pre-existing conditions, but did not specify how it would replace the existing rules if the ACA was invalidated.
The Supreme Court has not set a date for oral argument in the case, but it is expected to take place in the fall and a decision is not expected until after the November elections.
In the meantime, doctors are looking for a vaccine for Covid-19, and 124,000 Americans have died from the disease. There has been a new outbreak in several states, and the country hit a record 40,000 cases on Thursday, according to figures released by Johns Hopkins.
Hours before the Trump administration released his presentation Thursday, Joe Biden warned of government aggression against ACA and said, “Most cruelly of all, if Donald Trump has his way, the complications Covid-19 could become a new pre-existing condition. ”
“Some survivors will experience long-lasting health effects – such as scarring of the lungs and heart damage,” Biden said in a speech in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
“And if Donald Trump wins in court, insurers would be able to withdraw coverage or increase premiums simply because of their battle with the coronavirus. “