Monday, March 25, 2013

Personal Health Insurance Rather Than Tricare?

From a reader: Personal health insurance here in the Philippines excludes pre-existing conditions for at least two years, and sometimes never covers them. The majority of the policies end at age 65, with a few extremely expensive ones covering until 70. If you have a history of diabetes, heart attacks, and several other diseases there is no coverage available for a price a retiree could afford. Even if other insurance was available for those with pre-existing conditions, why should retirees have to pay extra to get it? We have already earned the right to Tricare coverage. All we ask for is that they cover us without throwing up extra barriers and making it almost impossible to collect on claims. However, the biggest problem with this new program is that they have excluded the right to use any certified doctor, laboratory, pharmacy or hospital unless they are in the new closed network. That excludes hundreds of Tricare-certified providers that retirees were able to use prior to this program. If a retiree in a covered area continues to use a Tricare-certified doctor (who may be considered the best in his field but is not in the new closed network), or if they go for treatment to an excellent Tricare-certified hospital that is twenty minutes from your home (instead of the two hours it will take some to reach an inferior hospital in the new closed network), their claims will not be paid...period. Tricare has said they might consider some exceptions, but from their track record here in the Philippines, there is no way they will budge on this. Claim denied!

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