Mar 3, 2014 at 11:12 am #1313971
I received the renewal for the health insurance I provide my employees. I pay a portion they pay the rest. Average increase was 44%. Low was 29% and high is 63%. Some of these people will have to drop insurance on themselves or family members. They already had good coverage. Thanks Barry………..Mar 3, 2014 at 12:49 pm #2079041
@brcrainLocale: So Cal
Harry Reid says you are a liar…Mar 3, 2014 at 10:18 pm #2079230
The correct name is Romney Care and the idea was hatched in the Heritage Foundation a few years back. The Heritage Foundation is a right wing think tank (talk about an oxymoron).
Anyhow Obamacare as you call it is not government health care. You will notice that all the providers are private insurance carriers such as Blue Cross, Blue Shield etc. Like auto insurance (everyone is required to have it by law) the idea is to lower premiums by having a larger insurance pool which means "everyone". I have not yet heard anyone complain about auto insurance and having it.
Anyway, even with this evil Romney Care in place where I work my company managed to replace the old plan with a superior platinum plan at a lower cost. My Deductible went from $5,000 down to $1,000.00 and the benefits were better. My boss had sense enough to actually explore all the different plans out there. By actually looking at the market and seeing what was out there we actually managed to save money. Now the boss was for Romney and against the so called Obamacare which is actually Romney care. Needless to say he even admitted that we got a better deal.Mar 4, 2014 at 5:31 am #2079260
spelt with a tParticipant
@speltLocale: SW/C PA
I don't know about insurance, but there WAS a letter in my hometown paper the other day complaining about how many thousands of dollars this guy had paid in tickets for not wearing a seatbelt. Wackos are out there…
"A free America doesn’t mean freedom
Twenty-five years ago, I moved from my Johnstown home to the Bible Belt. I purchased a front-bumper license plate that read: “Buckle-up with Jesus.” Over the years, that $5 trinket has cost me more than $5,000 in multiple seat-belt violations, fines and court costs.
I have five full pages on my permanent record. I’m a career, habitual seat-belt offender.
In a free America – free to choose, free to accept or free to decline – we are not free to smoke pot and to not wear a seat belt."Mar 4, 2014 at 6:51 am #2079271
At least if he's not wearing seat belt he'll be able to get health care : )Mar 4, 2014 at 10:13 am #2079340
The Hill is reporting another major delay is in the works for a the ACA. Even they characterize it as a political move to dampen the impact on Democrats in the mid term elections.
Thankfully our President has the experience, knowledge and foresight to know what's best for us and can use his power to enforce or enact laws as he sees fit.
In the meantime, the backend of the process is still not complete. No one wants to speak on how many people have actually paid for a policy. Apparently that data is not available….sure!
I do enjoy watching Obama's loyal lemmings progress from blaming Bush for everything to taking responsibility.
The Heritage Foundation and Romney are now the culprits, too funny.
How about the Koch brothers, aren't they pulling the strings.
Man up, the Emperor has no clothes!!Mar 4, 2014 at 12:16 pm #2079380
Just think if it was actually state-provided health care like he wanted instead of having to cater to the private insurance companies who still need to make money but now also need to actually provide a cost-effective service. Surprisingly, the insurance companies are now realizing that providing the actual service they claimed to "provide" in the past costs more because they're actually forced to spend that money on actual care and not just lining their pockets while kicking the sick (expensive patients) off their plans.
We wouldn't need to be shopping for plans and the premiums would be much lower because everyone would be signed in to one system and able to reap true economies of scale. But of course we needed to let capitalism and the "free-market" work.Mar 4, 2014 at 1:02 pm #2079396
There are a couple different things happenning with this renewal that are "obamacarisms"
Our group is no longer rated by our groups actual costs but by a regional rating. All other things being equal our costs went up 10% because of this
All of our available programs changed, there are a few positive nuanced improvements. But on the whole the new plans are a step backwards for my folks. The market here is dominated by Kaiser, I personally have the only other option which is equally as ugly. Most of my people will now have what is now called a GOLD program, if they can afford to stay on it.
The giant difference is how children 19+ are handled. They can stay on their parents policy, BUT, the rate for each adult child is determined as if they bought the same policy for themselves. So, employee A has a spouse and 2 college age adult children on his policy. Currently pays $100 per month for the 1st child and 0 for the second. He will now pay $296 each child per month. The $296 jives exactly with the cost of a 21-24 y/o covered individually with the same plan.
So one of the big selling points of the ACA was you could keep your adult children on your policy until they're 26. Technically that is true. The S is going to hit the fan when Mommy and Daddy learn that there is zero cost benefit to keep them on the family policy.
Most small business policies renew June 1 (like ours) or year end. So what I'm seeing here is the first wave of Obamacare's hit on small business policies.
Because of the ever growing cost of healthcare and government's influence over it I decided this morning to freeze our program; continue on for those enrolled, and close future enrollment to all others. I have 25 employees and intend to keep the number way below the magic(bad magic) number of 50.Mar 4, 2014 at 1:27 pm #2079405
the "you can have your kids on your policy" is only advantageous if they can't get their own policy because of pre-existing conditions, but since that exclusion is gone, it doesn't make much difference now
I went to coveroregon.com and did an individual plan age 21 – $89 per month, family of 4 – $490, family of 5 – $619 – so to add a fifth person costs $129. That's weird, more expensive to add to my family plan than to just "kick the bird out of the nest".
the "you can have your kids on your policy" was only useful for the couple years before full implementation – at least based on these two casesMar 4, 2014 at 2:25 pm #2079426
Just checked the absolute cheapest premium plan offered by Kaiser (small business policies) for a 21 y/o, it is $188.98…..it has a $5000 deductible before insurance starts to help. Not too practical for a person just starting out.
I think many people with kids believed that their adult children would stay on there policies at a reduced rate, not full bore.I expect some blowback on it. A policy with a more tolerable deductable is $296. I wondered how the young people were going to subsidize older people when they could stay on the folk's policy until 26. Now I know.
Several years ago when my eldest son went to college we bought a basic student policy sold through the school for $150 a semester. Those policies are no longer legal. I guess replaced by $300 a month.
This is going to stress middle class families even more….can't be good for the economy.Mar 4, 2014 at 2:34 pm #2079431
"The market here is dominated by Kaiser, I personally have the only other option which is equally as ugly. "
Unfortunately this is the most critical piece your post as to why your premiums are what they are. Kaiser has long been known to go in, dominate a market push out competitors, overcharge and under deliver… The walmart of healthcare. The fact that you only have one other possible option to go to speaks to the lack of supply which enables them to also overcharge. Without any real meaningful and substantial competition Kaiser can pretty much run up the price on you.
Not to mention that they basically force you to go in network and only work with Kaiser providers further creating a monopoly on the care that you receiveMar 4, 2014 at 3:14 pm #2079451
@harry-nLocale: Western US
… dominate a market push out competitors, overcharge and under deliver
A number of markets (i.e. zip codes or counties) with one or two insurers are seeing higher prices vs. other markets with several competitors, which are seeing lower (not eligible for ACA myself, more an academic pursuit). Also included is the amount of claims filed. So healthy zip codes with ski areas are seeing higher premiums since there are more accidents (this is all from business articles – I imagine less active US zip codes probably have more medical bills covered by Medicare and/or Medicaid since it will be a while before the first granny breaks her hip on the snowboard half pipe). Same as auto insurance when I asked my insurer why my rate doubled when moving to a neighboring county (before I flipped and rolled that 4WD, that is…). The insurer told me the accident rate for that county was high.
Semi-related, visiting a US dentist recently, the exam/cleaning room is now like a multi-bay assembly line with no separation where neighboring patient consultations could be overheard — since there were no walls. Nice to know my chompers are in very good shape vs the rest of the city's btw, … but how efficient do we need to be squeezing every penny out for shareholders?
ed: emph/wc/brMar 4, 2014 at 3:26 pm #2079453
The fewer options have to Schopenhauer from on the exchanges the higher your premiums will be due to less competition. This article basically supports this idea.
The states which had the lowest premiums had an average of 8 exchanges to shop from while the states with the highest rates had an average or 3. That's not a coincidence. Neither is the fact that most of the states with the highest premiums are those who chose not to participate in the federal exchange program or did so only late in the game, under duress which led to less competition because smaller insurers couldn't get their act together in enough time to participate, effectively shutting them out. They didn't have a cadre of 100 lawyers able to ensure compliance unlike the larger companies; while also trying to provide actual coverage on a local level.
Rates also vary by the amount of people participating in order to spread the cost, it's again no coincidence that in areas where there is greater population density such as Texas and California, on average the rates are lower per individual or family whereas in places such as Wyoming they are higherMar 4, 2014 at 3:48 pm #2079461
I'm sitting in Napa CA and the region as far as rating is concerned is North/East SF bay area. Several hundred thousand people at least. We have several insurers to choose from but relativily few providers. Most of the non Kaiser doctors work for one of two decent size medical groups. But, the vast majority of the business goes to Kaiser.
One of the consequences of the ACA, and earlier government intrusions, is that the day when a doctor could hang a shingle has largely past. There are simply too many regulations, lawyers and uncertainty to risk going it alone. Hence, a few large providers with little incentive to be price competitive and to few reasons to keep medically unneccessary procedures to a minimum.Mar 4, 2014 at 10:18 pm #2079572
Perhaps you should read the Forbes article. Yep, the Heritage Foundation promoted the the idea of the individual mandate.
Read it and weep.Mar 5, 2014 at 7:18 am #2079620
One thing interesting about that Forbes article is that Gingrich supported the individual mandate as a tactic to defeat Hillarycare.
He was so sincere at the time when he said the individual mandate was such a great idea : )
Hmmm, I wonder if everything he says is just a political tactic?
What about Paul Ryan?Mar 5, 2014 at 8:01 am #2079632
@glenn64Locale: Snowhere, MN
"Like auto insurance (everyone is required to have it by law)"
Only people who choose to become licensed to operate a motorized vehicle on a public roadway, and then proceed to do so, are required to obtain auto insurance. That's a pretty defining requisite, is voluntary, and it certainly isn't "everyone".
So what is the defining requisite that we voluntarily chose to partake in that nessecitates the need for health insurance?
Also, I can't speak for all states, but pretty sure the only required auto insurance, doesn't cover you, just the damage you cause to somebody else.Mar 5, 2014 at 8:19 am #2079641
And what happens if something unexpectedly happens to you and you "choose" not to have health insurance? Can I "choose" not to have to cover you and your bills? Can I tell my insurance company that I "choose" not to pay my now higher premiums because they need to cover your costs which you now can't pay? Can I tell the doctor or emergency room that I "choose" not to pay the higher price for the treatment that I need as a paying customer because I don't want them to pass your uncovered costs onto me?
To think you don't/won't need it is naive.Mar 5, 2014 at 8:30 am #2079646
@glenn64Locale: Snowhere, MN
My argument? The claim was made that ACA is just like auto insurance, I pointed out how it is not, and posed the question as to what made them alike. Calling me naive doesn't answer the question.
And you're not the paying customer, the person without insurance would be. You'd be an insurance benefactor.Mar 5, 2014 at 8:36 am #2079652
Sorry I meant no offense, I was making a general comment. I think we're actually making the same argument… that you can't just choose or make a conscious decision to use health insurance as you can with driving a motor vehicle. Life is just not that predictable.
Hence, the need for penalties up front for not enrolling since at some point you'll likely need it and if you don't have it others (responsible, paying customers) will be stuck holding your bill.Mar 5, 2014 at 11:11 am #2079722
I'm definitely with Glen on this. The individual mandate is just one more example of the feds taking individual liberty from us bit by bit. Is this really what the founders had in mind? Do you enjoy the government telling you what to do?
The penalties people pay for not being insured will not go to offset actual medical costs. Those penalties are nothing more than a tax increase on the middle (non-government class). Cost shifting occured before Obamacare because we paid for services inccurred by others who didn't pay. Now, we will still have that cost shift AND higher insurance rates to subsidize others. If you buy an individual policy, or buy for a group you see more. If your employer covers most of your insurance, or are on Medicare, you are largely sheltered from the bulk of the ACA, at least so far.
Does anyone really believe the ACA is going to make things better for more than it makes things worse for? Adding a layer of BS and the government is never going to be cheaper.
My personal views on med insurance aside; pre-ACA was loaded with issues, post-ACA is even worse. Just because the feds made it different does not mean they made it better.Mar 5, 2014 at 11:22 am #2079730
Thanks for the link.
The individual mandate is only one of many ideas expressed in the Heritage report. You might consider reading it to understand the principles of free markets on consumer behaviors.
You might also consider:
1)The Heritage recommendation referenced in the Forbes article was published in 1989, hum might need a little update.
2)The ACA was never discussed in committee in the House of Representatives. Pelosi and a handful of her cronies wrote the bill in secret.
3)The House version of the ACA has no republican nor conservative amendments, Pelosi would not allow any input
4)The Senate version was discussed in committee, but a 200 + page amendment was done by Reid and his cronies in secret that radically altered the bill on the floor.
5) The Senate and the House version never went to a bi-partisan committee, as per standard practice.
6) After Scott Brown won Kennedy's seat, Reid no long had the ability to prevent amendments nor prevent a filibuster of a House/Senate reconciled bill.
7) Pelosi "deemed" the Senate version to have passed the House preventing an actual vote on an increasingly unpopular piece of legislation.
8) The Senator version was never "cleaned up" and is what it is….crap
9) "We must pass it to know what's in it" is the democrat's version of "mission accomplished" or how bout "if you like your plan, you can keep it, period"
Go back to the Organizing for Action web site and get some more talking points. My Kleenex box remains un-opened
BTW if anyone thinks Kaiser has a monopoly on insurance, illegal by the way, wait till the federal government runs it.Mar 5, 2014 at 12:41 pm #2079779
Unfortunately the facts belie your belief in the relationship between money which doesn't directly go to offset healthcare costs vs. just added revenues/taxes to the government.Mar 5, 2014 at 1:13 pm #2079799
It seems to me that the gov says they are going to do a lot of different things. Often, this is not what happens. If your comfortable believing what the gov tells you that is all very nice. I do not take any of them at their word. Didn't they also tell us "if you like your plan you can keep it" and " this will save the average family $2500 per year".
You will certainly be more pleased about the ACA if you ignore reality.Mar 5, 2014 at 1:20 pm #2079802
Yes… I will choose "the Government." Especially the one agency within it who's only purpose for waking up each day and going to work is to independently and objectively analyze the economic and budgetary impact of every government spending decision made in a vacuum from all of the talking heads and noise from both left and right. Those are the people who present the facts upon which I rely… not a party sponsored TV channel, newspaper or blog.
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