Curious to know how many of us are living without health insurance and how "Obamacare" will affect us.
My student health insurance expires in a few weeks. It's a deeply flawed policy with many exclusions and cost caps. Prescription drug aren't even covered.
I'll need to buy a stopgap policy to cover me from September until December 31.
On October 1, when my state health insurance marketplace goes live, I'll buy a policy under the Affordable Care Act that will go into effect on January 1. I can't wait.
I can finally afford health insurance and am confused at what to buy. Except for low-level chronic pain, I'm in perfect health. I've only been hospitalized once in my life, although I realize that my luck may one day run out.
Good question, I'd love to know what the responses will be. I've been without health insurance for about 3 years. Due to being a contractor and not wanting to spend the $$ for it. I'm healthy but I'm worried because I need to start getting medical checkups, some support for mental health, etc and am currently without a job.
Wow, this is surprising.
X - Other
I'm retired and have coverage through my former employer. Not yet eligible for Medicare.
too soon to say r2, the prices etc. don't come out until October.
I am on Cobra since June. My payment equals my rent. I have been told by insurance companies that they will not cover me, and that I need to wait till October 1st to get Obamacare, and then be covered January 1st 2014, by a plan which will be 50% less benefits than the Cobra.
I quit working at 40 and managed to live completely without health insurance for the next 25 years. Now I'm on Medicare and hate it. You feel like the grungy patron with a 50% off coupon.
If I was the age most of you guys are, I would run for the hills and hide to avoid being sucked into this Program from Hell.
Even freeper and tea-bagger seniors like Medicare and think it's a great program, freak @R8.
R7, you are supposed to go out and look for a better policy, not stay with them. You didn't know that?
What I hate...they say affordable without defining it.
If you take home 2k a month and your rent is 1700 NOTHING is affordable but the govt will make a chart and if you don't buy then you get penalized.
This is a big gift to the insurance companies and a fuck you to America.
[quote]I quit working at 40 and managed to live completely without health insurance for the next 25 years.
Then you have nothing to complain about. If you retired at 40 and managed to support yourself for 25 years after that, you're clearly quite wealthy compared to the general population. Since nothing in your post indicates financial struggles or anxieties, don't come back now and claim otherwise. You're far, far better off than the rest of us.
[quote]Now I'm on Medicare and hate it.
So you preferred living without health insurance? Then don't use Medicare! Pay your own way or just avoid the doctor. As Barbara Bush would say, that's worked out well for you in the past. Besides, all those years of avoiding preventative care means you're just going to be a drain on the system now. So stay home and pop a Tylenol the next time you feel ill. Do us all a favor and die of a massive stroke.
[quote]You feel like the grungy patron with a 50% off coupon.
In a post filled with asinine remarks, this is by far the stupidest.
[quote]If I was the age most of you guys are, I would run for the hills and hide to avoid being sucked into this Program from Hell.
R8, whoever is paying you to post this drivel is not getting their money's worth.
BTW, if anyone is a freeloader on Medicare, it's you, Montgomery Burns, not the elderly and destitute (or just middle class!) that actually need it.
A general question - if you let your COBRA lapse, how hard is it to find a new insurance plan independently? Anyone know?
I can't wait for obamacare to kick in, I'm self employed and am paying out of the ass for an individual, high deductible plan., with caveats pertaining to how much will go toward certain diseases, and their definition of preexisting is 'up to their discretion'.
So naysayers, the gift to insurance companies is the current mess, not affordable health care act, the future will be much better for America once it all kicks in.
Totally agree, R15.
[quote]Except for low-level chronic pain, I'm in perfect health
But I'm ooooh so tender to the touch!
I'm not certain r8id a troll. Outside major metropolitan areas and/or areas with a lot of old people it's not always easy to find doctors who accept Medicare. Reimbursements have lagged well behind inflation.
My mother has a hard time with continuity of care unless she's really sick and needs to be treated in the hospital and then she's fine. But gone are the days when she could go to any private physician in town and hand over her card.
Until we go to single-payer, the system will continue to be a disaster. There is SO much waste and confusion with the current system.
only hard if you have pre-existing conditions r14
next year Obamacare should change that though.
I've noticed that as well, r15. A lot of private insurance won't cover anything like dementia, Parkinsons, Lou Gehrig's disease or serious illnesses. Which makes me wonder why even bother?
Why pay that kind of money when the "biggies" won't be covered anyway?
When I got laid off I skipped COBRA (too expensive) and bought a high-deductible "catastrophic coverage" plan for $65 a month.
I pay any health costs out of pocket but am healthy so they have been negligible.
What will be the penalty if I don't purchase insurance when Obamacare kicks in?
R8 may have made some poor choices when selecting the type of Medicare coverage he has- you have choices with supplementals and even the type of Medicare part A/B you select. Also, pretty astounding that someone without medical coverage for 25 years would complain about having it. Something sound off about that post.
R23, why would you not want medical insurance?
I think the fine is eighty dollars r23.
Medicare and supplemental from previous employer
I was laid off of my corporate job almost 5 years ago. I haven't had health insurance since. I do work but I have a mortgage to keep up. I'm 57.
I just don't sick.
I'm uninsured with a rare disease. I haven't been able to work or for that matter even get out of bed often for about 3.5 years. I'm not eligible for disability or medicare and of course no one will sell me health insurance.
Being restricted to insurer covered doctors means I would still be paying out of shallow pockets to pay for the few and scattered specialists I need. There's been no information that I've seen which lists what the new legal caps will be on co-pays nor what they can hike rates up to for those of us with pre-existing conditions. The only thing that really makes sense for me to buy under this system coming in is prescription insurance because it's costing me over $400 now for just 3 medications with a discount from one of those companies that send you a discount card (they sent me 8 of them for some reason) in the mail.
Until everything is just covered and we can see whichever doctors we need to and they can't charge insane rates for 'high risk' clients, $99 penalty a year is way closer to affordable for me than $99 a month or a week or a day or an hour or whatever they decide is a 'fair' price to cover people like me since I'm going to still have to pay for all my doctor visits out of pocket anyway on top of the insurance fees.
Also, I really don't think forcing citizens into commerce with private companies under threat of financial penalty can withstand legal scrutiny. Existing in a body is not a choice like purchasing and choosing to drive a car.
[quote]Something sound off about that post.
Perhaps because the entire post is a fabrication created by a right-wing troll.
[quote]What will be the penalty if I don't purchase insurance when Obamacare kicks in? (West Coast Lesbian)
They'll force you to have sex with men.
[quote]Also, I really don't think forcing citizens into commerce with private companies under threat of financial penalty can withstand legal scrutiny.
It already did.
Haven't had medical insurance in about 4 years. Am a freelancer and my income went down drastically in 2009 while they were trying to raise my premiums on my individual policy by about 30 percent. So, had to drop the insurance.
These days, I'm making enough to get my bills paid but not enough to pay the $500+ a month insurance would charge me.
Perhaps the rates for individual policies will come down once everyone is in, but I doubt it.
So, the $99 penalty is more affordable.
R25, I never said I didn't want health insurance. I am just asking what would happen IF I didn't happen to purchase it in time.
I am a grad student and paying off a couple of large medical bills. Finances are a little tight right now. Both bills are from run-of-the-mill issues - annual female exam and a case of strep throat. I'll welcome the health insurance.
R31, I'll take that penalty over being forced to attend MichFest.
So when *will* we start to see health care on the open market? I've seen some policies now but they don't cover anything but preventative care. If you get cancer, HIV or even have a bad accident, you're pretty much screwed.
Is that considered "affordable health care"?
The affordable health care act will circumvent all of those preexisting issues r35, that's the beauty of it.
I have a 5000 deductible plan currently, because it's all I can afford. It is good coverage for emergency situations, and other catastrophic-non-preexisting health issues. As soon as the non pre existing plans open, I'm ditching my inhumane insurance and taking better care of myself.
While it's a step in the right direction the costs of administering the Obamacare plan will be huge - why not just go straight to the well, as it were? In the UK (where I'm currently working) the NHS provides hospitals and GP services for the entire population, with all the specialists you could want, everything - all free to use and all paid for by taxes. The taxes aren't huge, no-one goes without medical care, no matter how serious your illness you will receive the same treatment no matter what your financial or employment background is.
I had to see a doctor earlier this year: 1 GP visit, 2 hospital visits involving 4 neurologists, 1 radiologist, 1 ER doctor. Cost to me = £0. Absolutely free.
Pay a tiny bit more in taxes, don't pay for private insurance, get all the medical care you could ever need - not the most difficult choice.
r37 because the conservative majority in the USA think that is socialism and therefore evil (all the while all of them experience the best health insurance in the usa at the lowest cost).
Here are some facts though for the mis informed -
Families making less than 133 percent of the poverty line — that’s about $29,000 for a family of four — will be covered through Medicaid. Between 133 percent and 400 percent of the poverty line — $88,000 for a family of four – families will get tax credits on a sliding scale to help pay for private insurance.
For families making less than 400 percent of the poverty line, premiums are capped. So, between 150% and 200% of the poverty line, for instance, families won’t have to pay more than 6.3 percent of their income in premiums. Between 300 percent and 400 percent, they won’t have to pay more than 9.5 percent.
When the individual mandate is fully phased-in, those who can afford coverage — which is defined as insurance costing less than 8 percent of their annual income — but choose to forgo it will have to pay either $695 or 2.5 percent of the annual income, whichever is greater.
The law requires insurers to spend between 80 and 85 percent of every premium dollar on medical care (as opposed to administration, advertising, etc). If insurers exceed this threshold, they have to rebate the excess to their customers. This policy is already in effect, and insurers are expected to rebate $1.1 billion this year.
There are tax credits for people who opt to get insurance on their own, Heath care providers are forced to spend all the premiums they collect on actual health care and if not give the money back. No pre-existing condition exclusions, no maximum spending cap on health care provided (meaning they can't cut you off after 1million in costs - which if you have a serious illness trust me you can get there fast.)
[quote]What will be the penalty if I don't purchase insurance when Obamacare kicks in? (West Coast Lesbian)
For those working, it will be a percentage of their income. Not sure what it will be for grad students.
A friend calculated that her penalties would be around $800 a year. She earns a lot less than $100 000.
Do you really want to know why health care costs so much? One reason is the high cost of long term care for geriatric patients.
Dying geriatrics can spend months in acute hospital care, racking up thousands of dollars as they wax and wane in the last stages of life. ICU hospitalization averages 5K per patient per day.
Many patients are "full code" which means even tho they are actively dying and in the last stages of life they must be resuscitated with every death event.
Technology keeps them alive long after their bodies can sustain them. It's not unusual to see patients over 85 years trached and on ventilators in the ICU; then shipped to extended care facilities.
Bet you didn't kno that even if you have an Advance Directive with you and on your chart stating you do not wish to be kept alive or fed in the event of a death event, when you are hospitalized physicians take their direction from your next of kin.
If your next of kin says he wants you to stay alive, that's what the physician does. Reasoning? You can't sue if you are dead, but your spouse/children can and will.
More like 20K per day, boy are you living in the dark ages.
Won't be long until they start lining everyone up who can't afford to pay their own way and shooting them. People are already spotting the trucks on the highway with loads and loads of plastic coffins stacked on them.
See if you can catch the old ABC Movie of the Week entitled, "The Last Child". Pay particular attention to the Ralph Bellamy character. THAT is what is coming. It's outrageous, a country as rich and technologically-advanced as we are, and we have no universal health care. I'm coasting towards Medicare, not a lovely thought. When I worked I had THE BEST medical coverage. There wasn't a time I had to worry about any medical situation, because I knew it would be covered. My former company is giving me 3yrs of the same medical benefits, and that will expire when Medicare kicks in. Although god knows what it'll be by that time? I don't know how people get by, who have no medical insurance? I'd be freakin' out.
That's just bullshit, r40. That's why everyone needs to have a living will or POA for health care or at least let their family know what they want BEFORE something happens.
It's disgusting that we keep people alive just because we can when many of them would rather die. Who wants to be in that sort of living death?
And as people start living longer, it will get worse. I can see why people are afraid of "death panels" but, really, if granny told you she didn't want any extreme measures to be taken for her and you insist on keeping her on a ventilator even though she's brain dead - what kind of person are you?
If you live in a Blue State, ObamaCare is likely to help you, either directly, or indirectly.
I live in a red state, and even I've already benefitted: I've gotten rebates from my insurance company for over-charging last year and this year.
But for the most part, red state residents are being screwed by republicans in their state, compared to Blue state residents.
Cutting down on 5 hour emergency room visits is enough all by itself.
What I find just as mind-blowing is that there is NO STANDARD NATIONAL PRICING FOR MEDICAL PROCEDURES/ITEMS. Who sets the prices of medical costs? The insurance industry??? (I don't know how costs are set)
NPR did a story recently about different hospitals within the same metropolitan area charging various rates for a circumcision.
One hospital charged $700 for the procedure, another one charged $500 and the most expensive charge was $2000 for the service. A local network of doctors were protesting the most expensive charge and they made the decision not to refer any of their patients to that expensive hospital. But what stood out for me in the story was that they all said that THEY HAD NO IDEA HOW MUCH THE SERVICE COST. The DOCTORS DID NOT KNOW HOW MUCH CERTAIN MEDICAL PROCEDURES COST. Unbelievable.
Think about how crazy it is to NOT KNOW THE COST OF SOMETHING. If we walked into a grocery store, a restaurant, an auto dealership, etc. and wanted to buy something we would look at the price tag. We know up front how much something is going to cost before we make the decision to purchase it.
It makes no sense that whenever we walk out of the dr's office we have no accurate idea how much we're going to be paying out of pocket. (I recently had a dr's appt and got the bill 2 months later. One of the charges was a $200 "room fee" to use the room where I met with the doctor. WTH? I have to pay to use the room to meet the doctor? Isn't it just a given that I will need to meet with the dr in his office instead of out in the parking lot??)
It's like the US healthcare system is a runaway stagecoach with no one holding the reins. Us consumers are sitting in that coach with no real sense of what we owe until we get the bill.
It should be a federal law that healthcare costs are set up front so that a consumer knows up front what they are going to be charged. (Taking into account that the same service will cost more in a large metropolitan area than in a smaller rural area where the cost of living is lower)
Anyone should be able to google, for example, "tetanus shot" and see that it has a national cost of, say, $7-$12" ($7 in low population areas and $12 in large metropolitan areas). I realize this is a very simplistic idea but why is pricing so murky and all over the place? Standardized and posted public costs would be a logical step to take I would think.
[quote] If you take home 2k a month and your rent is 1700 NOTHING is affordable but the govt will make a chart and if you don't buy then you get penalized. This is a big gift to the insurance companies and a fuck you to America.
R11, you are a fucking idiot and/or a troll.
Your rent should not exceed 33% of your take-home income. That has been a fundamental rule of personal economic responsibility for decades. If you have only $300 left over after paying rent you can't afford ANYTHING.
R23, the fine if you do not purchase is $95 and goes up each year until it reaches almost $700.
R47, I work in the health field for a major HMO and we are getting ready for Obama Care. We are focusing on preventive care and a tetanus shot and any kind of immunizations should be looked on as Preventve Care. The HMO I work for would give you a free tetanus shot, flu shot or Penumona shot or any immunizations due because it is cost-effective rather than you being hospitalized for lock-jaw or any disease you would get if you weren't immunized.
Diabetes is the biggest growing chronic disease in the US and as an RN, I help people manage their disease so it won't get any worse. I have seen seen people become motivated and improve their health which makes my work rewarding.....But you will not believe the number of people who refuse or decline to improve their health. These are the people who eat what they want, refuse to take their medications, wont exercise or do their lab tests and they become a drain on the system. I wonder---why the heck do they have a health plan if they are not doing anything about their health until a catastrophe happens like they have a kidney damage which woud have been prevented if they had taken their medications and watched what they eat?
This is what I hear is coming through the grapevine through Obama care. People may be penalized financially if they don't practice preventive care or are non-compliant. I don't see why a few bad apples should drag the rest of the system down by their disregard of their health which is totally preventable.
Isn't that Porky Pig's girlfriend?
Damn, r47, that's crazy shit!
Who sets the price? It sounds like whoever is working for the insurance companies just makes something up. There is so much fraud and skimming - seriously? They can charge whatever they want and never have to tell anyone?
Wow. If that isn't an invitation to skim money, I don't know what is.
R50, abrigdged version please?
R47, I recently had a colonoscopy. I am employed and insured with a PPO. I spent HOURS on the phone trying to find out how much it would cost, how much my share would be. You absolutely cannot find out – I eventually had some big secret 3-way teleconference where I learned my share would “probably” be 30% of whatever the charge was – but nobody could tell me the charge. The assistant in the office of the doctor who did the procedure told me they never know how much they are going to get paid for the procedure from the insurance company until they get paid. It is absolutely incredible that you cannot find this out. Now that it is all over, a month later, I still do not have any idea of what my share is and/or how much the procedure cost. Oh and by the way, after two weeks I still had no idea the results of the pathology, and I had to call and ask them the results; nobody called me until I put something in writing that “I can only assume everything is fine, since I didn’t get a call” – after that the doctor bothered to call me to tell me everything was all right. Even though insured, this procedure is apparently going to cost me over $1K out of pocket.
Colonoscopies are to be 100% covered under Obamacare, with no copayment.
Fact: the concept currently known as "Obamacare" was originally devised by the Heritage Foundation. They later disowned it when Hillary Clinton promoted the idea during her husband's presidency.
Another one of these threads!?
If it's such a bad thing, then why have Senate Rescumlicans voted to repeal it like 40 or more times? You can't possibly think they're on our side, can you?
Exactly, r58, Republicans don't do anything fir the masses, just for the 1% of the 1%.
Obamacare fines for no insurance:
2014: $95 or 1% of family income (whichever is greater)
2015: $325 or 2% of family income (whichever is greater)
2016+: $695 or 2.5% of family income (whichever is greater)