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What Do I Have to do to Get Colonoscopy for Free?

On September 2010 some of the provisions of the healthcare reform law began to take effect. One of the requirements of the healthcare reform act requires health insurance plans Medicare and Medicaid to cover routine healthcare procedures and exams without the requirement to pay a co-pay or deductible. This new provision gives individuals with a new health plan beginning after 23 March 2010 the right to receive routine preventative care such as yearly physical exam mammography and colonoscopy basically for free. The reason it is free is because there is no co-pay or deductible. Medicare and  Medicaid patients will began to receive this benefit in January of 2011. Patients who previously had private insurance plans prior to March 23 will have to wait until renewal of their present plan or change in plan. The law provides for existing plans to be grandfathered in and patients will continue to be responsible for their co-pay and deductible in those plans. This revision with a grandfather clause has led to some confusion and uncertainty concerning how this provision will affect any one individual. Unless you are absolute certain how this law effects your individual insurance plan it is highly recommended that you contact your insurance provider to check your benefits. During this transition time it is certainly understandable that some confusion may exist and contact with your insurance provider is strongly recommended. Given the current status of most private plans the plans may undergo revisions or carriers are changed almost on a yearly basis. With the passage of time soon all American will come under this new provisional. The cost of co-pays and deductible’s has represented a significant barrier to undergoing this study for many individuals particularly in light of the rising deductible’s over the last few years. With a new provisions of the healthcare reform law this will no longer be a barrier to obtain these somewhat expensive but important preventative measure which will hopefully decrease the risk and incidents of colon cancer.

As you are aware colonoscopy is an important preventative measure in decreasing the incidence of colon cancer. Colonoscopy is recommended for any patient over 50 and every 10 years after that in patients who have no symptoms or personal history of polyps or colon cancer. People who have a strong family history of colon polyps or colon cancer and patient’s of African American descent are advised to undergo the procedure earlier and this should be discussed with your primary care physician.

The study as a common procedure performed under IV sedation. The studies usually preformed in a hospital and endoscopy center for surgery center. With a new provisions and healthcare reform act it is anticipated that the demand for colonoscopy will increase markedly over the next few years. We at the Cushing colonoscopy center have anticipated this rising demand and are pleased to make the service available to patients in our service area.

The study is a short and painless procedure preformed under IV sedation. The worst part of the study is the day before. The patient must undergo a cleansing procedure of the colon. The study is performed in the comfort of home and is relatively simple although somewhat unpleasant. To accomplish this cleansing we usually recommend the patient take the afternoon off before the procedure although they may begin the prep at 4 or 5 PM the day before. The colonoscopy is usually performed the following morning. After the procedure there is usually some residual sedation and we recommend that the patient’s not engage in any strenuous physical activity or hazardous activity for the remainder of that day. Patients may resume their normal daily activities the following day.

The study is safe and highly effective in reducing the incidence of colon carcinoma. This procedure as with all medical procedures is associated with some risks and you should be discussed this with your physician or the surgeon or endoscopist who preformes your procedure.

I highly recommend that individuals greater than 50 years of age available themselves of this benefit afforded by the healthcare reform act and obtain their free colonoscopy after discussion with their primary care physician and the surgeon or endoscopist that will perform the procedure.

Thanks for taking the time to read this brief discussion of the preventative medicine benefits of healthcare reform act. Get your free colonoscopy join us in continuing to attempt to decrease the rate of colon cancer.


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