Huffington Post: Some Rape Victims Denied Insurance Coverage


Some insurance companies deny coverage to women who have been raped because they may may have a pre-existing condition as a result of a crime, such as post traumatic stress disorder or a sexually transmitted disease, reports the Huffington Post. Some insurers also routinely deny long-term mental health care to women who have been sexually assaulted. The allegations came to light through the Huffington Post Investigative Fund’s citizen journalism project, which asked readers to provide anecdotes about the inner workings of the insurance industry.

A spokeswoman for the health insurance industry's largest trade group, America's Health Insurance Plans, said insurers do not discriminate against victims of sexual assault and ordinarily would not even know if a patient had been raped. But Cindy Holtzman, who works in the medical billing industry, said insurers generally categorize HIV-positive people as having a pre-existing condition and deny them coverage. Holtzman said that health insurance companies also consistently decline coverage for anyone who has taken anti-HIV drugs, even if they test negative for the virus.

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