Health Insurance Miscellaneous

Developing a pre-existing condition

I have recently read in the press a number of mentions of the phrase “developing a pre-existing condition.”  For instance, a Cato Institute paper discusses this phenomenon and how you can buy insurance against developing a pre-existing condition.

This phrase seem paradoxical however.  How can you develop a pre-existing condition?  Before you “developed” the condition, it was not pre-existing.  Once the condition comes into existence, at what point is it pre-existing?  Immediately?

The phrase is more likely derived from the language of insurance companies rather than common sense.  If you get sick during a given year and have to renew your insurance over the subsequent year, the illness you developed during the past year will become a pre-existing condition next year when you need to buy insurance.  Thus, by becoming sick, you immediately have a pre-existing condition which will affect your future health insurance premiums.

Only in the crazy language of insurance-speak would it be  possible to develop a pre-existing condition.

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