Men, Stand By Your Woman for Health Reform

images-3A litany of news stories about women and children being denied health insurance due to preexistent conditions has emerged in the wake of health care reform.
Perhaps you are familiar with the story of 4 month old Alex Lange who was denied health coverage for being too fat. The insurance company which denied baby Alex coverage has since changed its underwriting policy and granted the infant health insurance. Peggy Robertson was denied coverage because she was still child-bearing age and would not submit to involuntary sterilization after undergoing a C-section. The name of the her insurance company is Golden Rule. The company should be renamed. Christina Turner was denied health insurance after a doctor prescribed precautionary anti-AIDS medicine as a result of a rape. She suffered a dual violation.

Women pay more for health insurance coverage and it is becoming increasingly difficult for women to get and keep health insurance coverage. Many insurance companies and employers justify higher costs based on gender ranking and utilization. According to this logic, by design, women need and use more health services, especially as we get older, so we pay more.

Are child-bearing age men being denied coverage because they have a vasectomy? Are they being denied health insurance coverage because they have a preexistent condition such as erectile dysfunction and take prescribed medication like Viagra, Cialis or Levitra? Are men being denied health coverage because of preexistent sports injury for which a doctor prescribed Celebrex or DayPro to manage pain? I wonder if Rush Limbaugh was denied coverage because of his painkiller addiction? I doubt any of my examples have resulted in denial of coverage.

Now I am not expressing with certainty that men are or are not being denied health insurance coverage. Nor do I hate men. I love you guys! I am just making an observation about the sexism that permeates our health care system. images-6

If you guys really love us the way you say you do and the “little blue pill” allows some of you to love us too, then take heed of Lenny Kravitz and shout I’m gonna “Stand by my woman now!”



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