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27. Types of Coverage

About 80% of all Americans have some form of health insurance, but there are many different kinds of providers and that can effect the scope of coverage for costs faced by cancer patients.

Health insurance coverage, under age 65: 46.5 Million (18%) uninsured, 162.7 million (62%) employer insured, 6.5 million (2%) medicare insured, 32.6 million (13%) medicaid insured, 12.5 million (5%) otherMedicaid
This is a federally-aided but state-operated health insurance program available only to low-income persons who meetnarrow eligibility criteria.The main beneficiaries are intended to be families with children. Thus, a recent study found that for adults, aged 45-64 who did not have children, only 8% qualified for Medicaid.

Medicare Plan
This is a form of publicly sponsored health insurance which covers most Americans age 65 and over. It is available if you or your spouse paid into Social Security for at least 10 years. Medicare Part A is hospital insurance and Medicare Part B covers doctor visits and several other medical services. Part D covers prescription drugs.

Employer Plans
Nearly all companies with over 200 employees offer health insurance, mainly through a health maintenance organization, commonly called an HMO. HMOs offer coverage for both hospital and physician services but require use of in-network providers; there is a variation, known as a point-of-service plan, where patients can choose (although it will cost more) to visit out-of-network providers.


Health Disparities. Many studies have shown that those with no insurance (or inadequate insurance) postpone treatments for their cancer thus reducing chances of survival.

Coverage & Survival Rates. The head of the American Cancer Society has said that lack of adequate insurance may prove to be "a bigger killer than cigarettes" for cancer.