U.S. Forum Newsletter

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US FORUM CONNECTION #95, November 2011

This publication is intended for your information about issues important to education, women and children.  How you choose to use the information included here is up to each individual.
1.  Insurance companies are prohibited from dropping people�s coverage if they become sick.  (effective 2011)
2.  Insurance companies are prohibited from imposing lifetime limits on coverage. (effective 2011)
3.  Insurance companies are prohibited from limiting the amount of money they will pay for benefits during one year. Effective in 2012, annual limits cannot be lower than $1.2 million. (The limit on what insurance companies will pay for medical care will be raised in 2013 and in 2014 insurance companies cannot have any limit on annual payment.)
4.  Health plans are prohibited from denying coverage to children ages 0-19 with pre-existing conditions such as asthma and diabetes. (effective 2011)
5. Insurance companies are prohibited from requiring women to get approval for care for obstetrical and gynecological care. (effective 2011)
6.  All health care plans must cover preventive health care for women with no copay or deductible.  Effective 2012 this includes
    a. Mammograms for every 1-2 years for women over 40
    b. Cervical cancer screening
    c. Smoking and alcohol cessation programs for adults
    d. A wide range of prenatal screenings and tests
    e. Diabetes and blood pressure screening and counseling
    f.  Depression screening for adolescents and adults.

The list is expanded in 2013 to include
    a. all FDA-approved contraception
    b. Well woman visits
    c. Lactation consultation and supplies
    d. Screening and counseling for interpersonal and domestic violence
    e. Screening for gestational diabetes
    f. DNA co-testing for HPV
    g. Counseling regarding sexually transmitted infections including HIV
    h. Screening for HIV 

Effective in 2014
a. Insurance companies will no longer be able to deny women coverage due to pre-existing conditions, which in the past have included having had a C-section, breast or cervical cancer, or having received medical treatment for domestic or sexual violence.
b. Insurers must end the practice of charging women more for coverage than they charge men.
**The source for this information is the National Women�s Law Center.
Thursday, December 15 at 2:00 p.m. EST there will be a free conference call regarding Early Childhood Updates: Funding and Reauthorization Prospects sponsored by the National Women�s Law Center. You must register in advance in order to participate.  To register go to http://action.nwlc.org/site/Survey?SURVEY_ID=13241&ACTION_REQUIRED=URI_ACTION_USER_REQUESTS&autologin=true .
The U.S. Forum Committee has made coming to NLS more affordable this year by negotiating lower hotel rates ($129/night as opposed to $260/night), holding the seminar in a hotel which provides breakfast as part of the hotel room charge, and including a meal in the registration fee (lunch on Monday will be provided as part of the registration fee).  The registration form is available at http://deltakappagamma.org/US-Forum/index.html
We are hoping to get a White House tour.  Those desiring to be included in the tour should communicate their social security numbers  to Dr. Angela O. Bedenbaugh either by email to Angela.Bedenbaugh@usm.edu or by snail mail to her at 63 Suggs Road, Hattiesburg, MS 39402.

U.S. GOVERNMENT CONTACT INFORMATION can be obtained through Congressional Switchboard 1-866-327-8670 (this is a toll free number).  You can contact your Congressman and Senator through this number without paying long distance charges.
http://www.house.gov/ for members of the House of Representatives http://www.senate.gov/ for members of the U.S. Senate
White House 1-202-456-1111
Telephone numbers for the White House switchboard  202-224-3121 or 202-225-3121