ObamaCare and the Hobble Grumble
Like a wounded dragon, ObamaCare, hobbles along in its implementation providing varied costs that either shock and dismay or relief. It is hard to make a general assumption of your specific situation and what it may cost.
The website for the sign up is still a mess. It is taking hours to fill out. It is confusing because of the details one must consider for a plan. Many give up frustrated and seek the help of a "Navigator", a nice word for a person trained to help those. Even getting one proves another hurdle for the seekers. As if not all this is boggling enough, the government is also working on a Spanish website to mirror the English website. This website is targeted for those Hispanics who don't know English and nowhere near ready for public consumption.
Just why do we need a duplicate site? This is just compounding a problem over language. Navigators are not the guru of ObamaCare, in fact, many times, they have that response of, 'I don't know", or if in person, a dumbfounded look. Navigators are suppose to ID themselves and show papers indicating they completed a curriculum. They earn between $15-20 an hour and many actually possess a master's degree in something. The training for a Navigator is only 20 hours and the core training is the health care law highlights, how to handle customers. There is not a lot of training about the website. There are few background checks for them.
Even with a navigator at your side, just getting on the website is frustrating because of creating a password, which must be between 6-74 letters, one number and one approved symbol. The instruction is unclear because one character must be a upper or lower case. Huh? Which is it? Upper OR lower case, it can't be both.
Many people who manage to get to end result of signup (takes 1-3 hours) what happens is that their monthly bill is lowered BUT their deductible (the part they pay before insurance pays) skyrockets! Is this really better? Rarely do BOTH drop lower than in pre-ObamaCare law.
For instance, one person, whose projected income was $60K\year, they barely qualify for a subsidy. If the income is inaccurate and more, the excess must be paid to the government. At this income level, many plans hover around the $400 per month mark. Get this- the bulk of these plans have a deductible of at least $10,000! You say what? Yes, the bulk have a deductible of at least $10,000, far higher than plans in pre-ObamaCare.
This is the shock after the hobble of the Affordable Care Act. When many people reach this point, they do not sign up, shut down the computer and sigh. They probably think, 'Eff this". Now, many are intimidated by the online enrollment, so they opt for the "paper" method. This is just as slow because once the forms are filled out, they then are entered into the same computer system that has had problems.
Another turn off for many is that the whole concept is that the young people (under 30?) generally pay way more than older baby-boomers (those 50+) who will be using it more often. The young take care of the old. Some like this,but in our culture, where youth reigns, many are refusing and saying, "Eff this". These people are more than willing to pay the fine of $100 for the 2014 for NOT signing up. Maybe even the $200 fine in 2015.
Of course, adding to this, are the data security concerns and breeches that IT experts indicate can be hacked from the outside.
ObamaCare is a work in progress that debuted to rashly. It was a lofty, noble , concept Obama had to leave his mark on the social fabric of America. But it was an idea and plan that is still having many unforeseen results and with each event, Americans hit the "pause" button in their mind before slogging though the website, wasting time and only finding out that their previous healthcare plan was simply less expensive and better than what the government is providing.
What good does it do if your monthly cost drops some plans only to have an astronomical deductible that you pay before insurance does? Will a hospital really refuse medical treatment if a person cannot pay the deductible??? If not, the government will probably pay for it anyway.
The people with no health benefits are the ones reaping the best deal because they had none! Those with healthcare already may get the shaft at one end or the other, or, might get lucky and actually have a better deal than pre-ObamaCare. So far, 35% of the enrollees have been over 60 yrs. If the bulk of enrollees are 50+, the plan will be very expensive because the plan is based on those under 30 yrs. signing up and paying more.
Many are just refusing to sign up. I think most should. The attitude should be a "wait and see" one. If you have to pay the $100 fine, do it. There are just too many issues that keep arising up as time goes on, security concerns, data concerns with insurance companies. I just do not trust it- yet.