/The Miami Herald
reports on Ian Pearl, a South Florida man born with muscular dystrophy who is drawing attention to discriminatory health insurance practices against the disabled. Pearl is the "inspiration for 'Ian's Law,' legislation being introduced by two New York state legislators that would require insurance companies to get approval from the state before dropping coverage plans for existing clients."
Pearl has "lived the last 18 years on a ventilator hooked to a tracheal tube. Although the procedure is known for helping those with muscular dystrophy live longer, it can come with a cost: the need for 24-hour medical attention." Pearl's health insurance, which was purchased by his father in 1981, covered this treatment. "But Guardian Life Insurance, which is based in New York, notified the Pearls that it was dropping Ian's coverage in December as part of a companywide restructuring of its insurance policies. ... With his insurance set to expire in weeks, Pearl and his family mobilized to draw attention to their case" (Figueroa, 11/10).