Two Years Old and Not Part of the Family? (Updated)
The Obamacare elves have been busy doling out holiday tips on how to talk about signing onto the Affordable Care Act website while huddled around the yuletide fire singing secular songs with uninsured family members.
One tip the tip-givers forgot to include in the "Healthcare for the Holidays" Guide to Getting Insured was how to explain to those with children under the age of two that family insurance plans in the New York health exchange do not cover the littlest members of the family.
Wait! Maybe Peter Singer, colleague of Barack Obama's Science and Technology Czar John Holdren, had some input in the 'under two' individual policy idea and New York is a pilot state. Singer, a bioethics professor at Michelle Obama's alma mater, Princeton University, is of the opinion that disposing of children up to age two is fine because newborns and toddlers lack the "essential characteristics of personhood," which Singer says are rationality, autonomy, and self-consciousness.
So until Americans decide whether they're going to keep the little rug rats, maybe Obamacare advisors thought it would be best to prevent the little ones from mucking up the family plan.
Does requiring a two-year-old to have their own health insurance policy sound like a joke? Well it's no joke, because that's exactly what happened to self-employed title insurance business owner Cornelius Kelly and his pediatrician wife Jennifer.
The Kellys, who are parents to four small children, recently found themselves among the five million Americans canceled from their perfectly acceptable and affordable health insurance. Preferring not to be part of the Affordable Care Act but feeling like he had no other choice, Cornelius, with hesitant but hopeful anticipation, ventured forth onto the New York State of Health Web site.
The first thing Mr. Kelly found out was that none of the plans offered out-of-network coverage, which is what he wanted. Then it got even better when Cornelius heard that none of the plans would include the youngest member of his family who, according to a representative, until her second birthday would have to have a separate insurance policy of her own.
He, his wife and their three oldest children, ages three, five, and six, could all be together on one policy ranging in price from $810.84 to $2,554.71 a month. The baby, because she was not yet two, required a separate plan whose options ranged in price from $117.21 to $369.31.
So, as liberal logic would have it, children can stay on their parents insurance until they're 26-years-old, but if a child is not yet two-years-old, they're on their own.
Mr. Kelly, diligent shopper that he is, eventually did find a private plan that accepted the whole family for about $1,250 a month, which is $250 more than he had been paying.
And here America was convinced that women's needs are of utmost importance to Barack Obama. Finding out that if women in need happen to be 18-months-old and too young to need free birth control they're pretty much persona non grata, is just another on a long list of Obama disappointments.
Yet there is one advantage to requiring children 23 months and younger to have their own insurance policies: it will probably deter Americans like the Kellys from reproducing after January 1, 2014. But, if by chance the prolific Kellys, God forbid, should conceive a fifth child and Jennifer chooses abortion, it's comforting to know that children still in the womb- are covered on the family plan.
Jeannie hosts a blog at www.jeannie-ology.com
This was not in the article I read yesterday -- it was added today.
It was only after The Post called the state Health Department that Kelly said he got a call from a department representative telling him it had all been a mistake, and the baby could be covered after all under a family plan.
The department would not comment on the specifics of Kelly's situation or why it told the family three times that the baby wasn't covered. It would only say, "All children in the family are covered under a family policy. A separate policy is not needed for the 1 1/2 year old child."