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Mesothelioma, Pre-existing Conditions and the Affordable Care Act

Cancer patients, including those who suffer from mesothelioma, are one of many groups that stand to benefit from the Affordable Care Act. In the United States, it has been common practice for private insurance companies to ban mesothelioma patients because of their “preexisting conditions.” While for some the issue is political, for others, access to affordable care could make the difference between life and death.

Mesothelioma is a lung disorder, often linked to asbestos exposure. While some victims may contract the disease immediately after exposure, it can take decades for some diagnoses. Our mesothelioma attorneys in Massachusetts are dedicated to helping the victims and families of mesothelioma get the care and financial support they need to treat and manage the disease. We are also committed to raising awareness about mesothelioma treatment and in helping families collect compensation for their losses related to asbestos exposure.

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Some victims of mesothelioma have been unable to get access to treatment because of insurance limitations. For victims of mesothelioma, the consequences are severe and treatment is critical, not only to improving quality of life but to provide a chance of survival. The Affordable Care Act is slated to become fully effective on January 1, 2014. Enrollment began earlier this month with a backlash from members of Congress who have been seeking to defund the controversial law.

Despite the controversy, the ACA could be the solution for many patients who have been denied care up until now. For some patients, the law could not be enacted sooner and it could make a difference in creating opportunities for treatment and improving survival rates. In some instances, mesothelioma patients have been diagnosed while being previously covered by an employer insurance company. When the condition left these patients unable to work, they lost their jobs and could no longer get coverage through their employer or pay for insurance after COBRA expired.

Mesothelioma is a high-risk disease with a disheartening mortality rate; there is no known cure. Some victims who are diagnosed in their 30’s or 40’s may have been exposed to mesothelioma as a child with no chance of protecting or defending themselves against the disease.

Many victims of mesothelioma will live with this risk and uncertainty for years, especially when treatment is out of reach or unattainable. When seeking out insurance coverage with the disease, many victims are summarily rejected because of their pre-existing cancer. In these cases, the Affordable Care Act is a solution that gives hope to the mesothelioma patients that were previously prevented from accessing insurance and health care.

Victims of mesothelioma often pay for treatment and medical costs out of pocket. For patients and their families, pursing legal action is one option for financial relief. In addition to legal action which could return compensation for past and future medical care, pain and suffering, and other losses related to the exposure and cancer. No one plans to get cancer, but many victims of exposure and mesothelioma diagnosis may have a better chance of seeking affordable care and treatment under the ACA.

If you or a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at 1-888-367-2900.

More Blog Entries:

9/11 Mesothelioma Victims Finally Get Funded Treatment, Boston Mesothelioma Lawyer, October 15, 2013
Brave Workplace Safety Advocate Dies at 71, Boston Mesothelioma Lawyer Blog, August 28, 2013