Having sporadic health insurance coverage may seem like a good idea for those that have trouble making ends meet, but the costs may be the same as not having any insurance coverage at all. A recent study from the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research shows that diabetic patients with sporadic insurance coverage were very likely to skip preventative care and examinations. According to the study, these patients skipped out on tests just as frequently as people without any insurance coverage. In the end, a plan that was meant to save people money is, in fact, costing them more in the long run.
Without insurance coverage, consumers often must pay a co-pay for each test they receive. These fees are generally very small, but when patients need a sleuth of tests, the costs can escalate out of control very quickly. So, many people avoid tests that could help them spot cancer before it becomes a major issue. In the instance of cancer, finding affordable health insurance after diagnoses may be entirely impossible, as being diagnosed without insurance will qualify the disease as a pre-existing condition.
Insurers are quick to highlight the need for continuous insurance coverage. With changes coming to the nation’s health care system, it will be easier for people to find permanent coverage whether they have pre-existing conditions or not. They still may not be inclined to receive tests or participate in preventative care, however, as the potential for bad news is proving to be just as much of a deterrent in the system as cost is.