Post # 1
Greetings, hive – I was hoping to tap into some of your collective wisdom, especially from Bees who know their way around medicine and insurance.
DH and I will be moving to another state this summer and I will be starting a new job. We are in our mid-thirties, recently married, and excited to start a family. We don’t want to delay too long, but I was reading yesterday’s thread about all of the doctor visits that come along with pregnancy and wondering, if I were to get pregnant ahead of our upcoming move, how big of a hassle would it be to transfer to a new doctor partway through? Anybody done it?
And then a second, bigger question occurred to me: would we run into big insurance difficulties? I’m in grad school, about to defend my dissertation and graduate, and at the moment I’m on DH’s insurance. When we move and I start the new job (university position), he will job-hunt and the plan was that he would go on my insurance. My question is, would the new insurance company ever refuse to cover a pregnancy as a “pre-existing condition”? Would they be able to? I’m pretty sure there are provisions of the Affordable Care Act intended to prevent them doing that type of thing, but I don’t know if those are currently in effect or if they come into effect next year, etc. DH and I were talking about worst-case scenarios: would we have to live apart for several months while he stays in his current job so that I wouldn’t lose insurance coverage? Would we have to do COBRA? How expensive would that be?
If anyone out there has any experience with this, we would really appreciate it!
Post # 3
Re changing doctors partway through pregnancy: This should be relatively easy. People do this all the time for various reasons. You’ll just sign a medical records release form, and your old doctor will send all your records to your new doctor, and you’ll be on your way.
Re pregnancy as a pre-existing condition: I’m 99.9% sure that Obamacare specifically prevents insurance companies from refusing to take on a pregnant woman. I’m pregnant now, and I know that all of the Obamacare provisions that pertain to me are already in effect (no co-pays for prenatal visits, free breast pump, etc.) — so again, I’m 99.9% sure that this provision is already in effect.
Post # 4
As long as you dont have a lapse in insurance, it wont be a pre-existing insurance. As long as you are insured without a gap, you can be on 100 different insurances and it wont be considered a pre-existing.
So if this means you have to buy private insurance or use COBRA for 1-2 months, make sure you do it.
AS @stillme: said, changing doctors really isnt a problem.
I am moving across country at about 5 months. I just started researching doctors now and started making appts so that I knew I had someone to transition to. (Or course this may be a bit harder if you dont know what kind of insurance you will have and who they will cover)
Post # 5
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
You won’t qualify for FMLA if you start a new job while pregnant because you have to have worked full time at the same company for the previous 12 months to qualify. This only matters if your current employer is large enough to be covered by FMLA (50+ employees) and your future employer is large enough to be covered as well.
It might be a problem changing doctors while pregnant because some doctors won’t accept a patient with an EDD that overlaps with too many of their other patients. This is less likely to be a problem with a larger practice. You will definitely find a doctor that will take you, it just may not be your first or second choice.
They are not allowed to treat pregnancy as a pre-existing condition for insurance through your employer. However, access to individual insurance may be difficult and/or prohibitively expensive once pregnant. COBRA is extremely expensive; you are typically looking at $500+ per month to maintain benefits (it’s $800 at my job.)
Personally, I would wait a year to TTC because it sounds like most of these issues will be resolved by then. Also, even though it’s illegal to discriminate on the basis of pregnancy, it’s notoriously difficult to get hired for a job while visibly pregnant.
Post # 6
I agree with others that changing docs isn’t a big deal. I live overseas but will have my baby in the US so I won’t start with my US Ob until 33 weeks. They had no problem taking me as a patient so late in the pregnancy.
For insurance – ever company is different so doing some research would be helpful. I think Obamacare covers the “pre-exisiting condition” question but some insurance companies cover maternity along with the regular policy and some require a maternity rider that is an added cost to your standard policy. It may be something to budget for.
Post # 7
Pregnancy can be considered a pre-existing condition but as long as your lapse in coverage is not longer than 90 days it will be covered. If your transition is seamless there will definitely not be an issue but whether there’s no gap or a 90 day gap you’re going to have to show proof of insurance coverage. They’re just trying to avoid you going years wtihout insurance and only getting insurance to cover your pregnancy and then dropping the insurance after you have the baby.
Post # 8
I will actually be moving states when I am 6 months pregnant (this July). Switching doctors is not a problem assuming their are doctors nearby accepting new patients. We also are not having any lapses in insurance, and I am currently on my husband’s employer’s plan, and I will be on his new employer’s plan. I think when it is an employer, they have to cover it especially with no lapses. This has been my understanding anyway.
My fear is really while I am on cobra because my husband has a month off between jobs to move, etc. My doctor here has been quite understanding though, and I am going to see my doctor the last week before my DH leaves his job, so everything should be okay, and I should be able to schedule an appointment with the new insurance as soon as my DH starts his new job.