Don’t Let the Need for Health Insurance Stop You from Leaving
By Susan Johnson
June 09, 2016
Domestic abuse is something we don’t like to talk about. The Department of Justice (DOJ) defines domestic violence as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone.
For most of us, it’s hard to fathom intentionally harming those we love. We see domestic violence on TV programs—or turn to another channel to avoid it. We see domestic violence victims on the news. We like to think it couldn’t happen to anyone we know, but it does.
We can’t just bury our heads in the sand and pretend that domestic abuse doesn’t exist. Awareness and education are integral to ending this cycle. Victims need appropriate community services. HHS and DOJ work extensively to eliminate domestic violence, as do state agencies, and non-profit organizations. Getting Help with Domestic Violence from the HHS Family & Youth Services Bureau’s website contains a collection of resources available to domestic abuse victims.
This issue has been addressed by a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) for victims of domestic abuse/violence or spousal abandonment. Dependents may be eligible, too.
Alaskans can contact HealthCare.gov at 1-800-318-2596 to apply for this SEP. The SEP for victims of domestic abuse/violence or spousal abandonment lasts 60 days from the date of notification to HealthCare.gov. Some items to note:
So, if you (or someone you know) are currently a victim of domestic abuse, don’t let the thought of losing your health insurance stop you from leaving an abusive relationship. Protect yourself and your children—you’ll still have health insurance options available.
Received May 26, 2016 - Published June 09, 2016
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