Ohio, Oklahoma Offering Coverage For Hard-To-Insure People

The Cleveland Plain Dealer: "Ohioans who haven't been able to find affordable health insurance because of pre-existing conditions can get high-risk coverage as soon as Sept. 1. ... The state will receive $152 million in federal money to pay for the new program -- a product of the health-care reform bill President Barack Obama signed into law in March. That's enough to cover about 5,000 people, said Carly Glick, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Insurance." 

Those who qualify will pay "premiums in the range of what healthy people their age pay -- $98 to $493 a month for nonsmokers and $98 to $642 a month for smokers," with a $2500 deductible (Suchetka, 7/31).

The Oklahoman: "Beginning Sunday, some Oklahomans unable to buy health insurance due to pre-existing conditions may be able to get coverage through a temporary insurance pool ... Those accepted into the program will pay monthly premiums from $137 to $704. Insurance will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis until the program reaches capacity," about 1500 people. "To qualify for the program, applicants must have been without insurance for at least six months and have been denied coverage due to a pre-existing condition. Coverage may begin as early as Sept. 1" (7/31).

Related KHN story: High-Risk Health Insurance Pool Rules Bar Abortions, Limit Patient Costs  (7/29).

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