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Health insurance lifetime limits lifted

March 5, 2012 at 8:44 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, March 5 (UPI) -- Healthcare reform eliminated lifetime limits on insurance coverage for more than 105 million Americans, the U.S. secretary of health and human services says.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said before healthcare reform -- the Affordable care Act -- many Americans with serious illnesses such as cancer risked hitting the lifetime limit on the dollar amount their insurance companies would cover for their healthcare benefits.

"For years, Americans with lifetime caps imposed on their health insurance benefits have had to live with the fear that if an illness or accident happened, they could max out their health coverage when they needed it the most," Sebelius said in a statement. "Now, because of the healthcare law, they no longer have to live in fear of that happening."

Some health insurance plans provided coverage without dollar limits on lifetime benefits, but 105 million Americans were previously in health plans that had lifetime caps.

A report by HHS estimated about 70 million people in large employer plans, 25 million people in small employer plans and 10 million people with individually purchased health insurance had lifetime limits on their health benefits prior to the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010.

This includes 39.5 million women and 28 million children, the report said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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