Thursday, August 21, 2008


INSURANCE...a scary issue for CF/transplant patients who wish to live a normal life and make a living by working and who enjoy working.

Here is my issue very briefly: I am still on my parent's insurance until I am 25. I don't have to be a full time student. My parents got a "dependent" clause right after transplant that allows me to remain on their insurance until I'm 25 no matter what.

We currently get our insurance through my Dad's work. He owns his own vet clinic and was blessed to be able to get group insurance plans, even though right now he's the only one "subscribing" to it. We have been "spoiled" with great insurance and have never had any issues. My Dad is currently trying to sell his practice and retire.

My mom is contract work and cannot get (does not qualify) insurance through her work.

When my Dad does sell his practice, we will have COBRA coverage for 18 months.

I graduate in May, and plan on working for about 1 year. Then I am going back to nursing school in May of 2010. This is a huge passion of mine, and I truly believe it's what I want to do, and will do everything possible to keep this dream alive and make it come true.

I will not be able to work my 1st year of nursing school due to the time needed to devote entirely to school. I am allowed and encouraged to work during the 2nd year of the program, which is the Master's Degree part.

Will I find a job who has great insurance benefits? Will they accept me? What will I do when I start nursing school? How will I stay insured that first year?

EXCEPTIONAL insurance is a MUST for me. (as it is for all CF patients). However, the majority of CF patients are on Medicare/Medicaid, decide not to work--therefore are able to collect SSI/Disability, etc. For most CF patients who have been transplanted, the same conditions apply. The majority of transplant patients (not CF) are either retired or do not work. You come across a select few who WANT to work. OR---the CF patient is married and is able to get insurance through their spouse.

Not only do I WANT to work, but I do have to be able to support myself. And I would rather do it without government help (referring to Medicare, etc.) and without the government telling me how many hours I can work, etc. sum things up. We are currently exploring this issue and trying to decide what needs to be done. I wish this was something I didn't have to worry about, as it quite frankly concerns me a little. However, I know God will take care of everything and it will all end up ok in the end. I just have to trust him. Although, this doesn't mean that I am supposed to just "sit back" and not do anything. I do have to initiate the action and pursue what needs to be done.

In the meantime, if you are a CF/transplant patient who does work or has any suggestions/advice as far as getting insured, feel free to share. I would love to hear your opinions or experiences with this.

My plan as of now is: Get a full time job with insurance benefits soon after graduating this coming May. Work for this year prior to nursing school. Maybe I can get COBRA to cover the 1st year of nursing school. Then when I start my job as an RN, I will be able to continue insurance coverage as I finish up my Master's in nursing. OR---can I maybe get some SSI/Disability after I graduate in May and just work part time, or whatever is allowed. Stay on that through the 1st year of nursing school. Then find a job with insurance benefits. Who knows???


Kori said...

The only advice I can give is DO NOT let your insurance coverage lapse more than 30 days.

CF is considered a pre-existing condition if your insurance lapses.

We learned the hard way. Of course that was a few years back it may be different now. But when I started at UAB I found out that I had to carry my Cobra until my insurance here picked up or they would not approve Richard.

Katelyn said...

I am so sorry about the stress that this is bringing to your life, especially as the fall semester is about to get underway. Have heart though, because I am in the exact same predicament as you. I am going to be kicked off my parents insurance when I turn 25 or when I am finished with school, whichever comes first, and we are kind of in a panic wondering how on earth I'm going to get insurance. My best advice is, until you are able to get insurance through your career as an RN, Medicaid is probably your best bet. We've been researching it and that's what we plan on doing. Granted, I don't know if things are different in Alabama than in Texas, but I hope that helps nonetheless.

Susie said...

As a student you should be able to get some insurance through the University. I am not sure if it is enough to cover your costs, but that is an option. All students at my University are eligible for health insurance through Campus Health. At least this is something you can look into.