OAKLAND (KCBS) – A March 1 deadline is looming for parents of children with pre-existing health conditions, as they need to sign up by that date or face higher health insurance rates.

Ted Lempert, president of Children Now, a national organization for people who care about children, said the days of insurance companies discriminating against children with pre-existing conditions are over.

“It’s really hard to believe, but until the enactment of the federal health care reform bill, it was perfectly legal for insurers to refuse to provide health coverage for children with pre-existing conditions, such as asthma or diabetes,” he said.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

Lempert and other health officials in Oakland are urging parents of children under the age of 19, who have pre-existing conditions, to get insurance by March 1 to avoid the higher premiums after the deadline.

“In California alone, an estimated 1.1 million people under the age of 25 have been diagnosed with a pre-existing medical condition, for which they could have been denied coverage,” said Lempert.

Parents who miss the deadline could face the possibility of paying as much as 20 percent more in premium costs.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

  1. Jack says:

    Fantastic post. I just wanted to say thanks for your efforts!

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