TIPS FROM TRESSA
If you are like many Americans, you are probably wondering what is next for health insurance. It’s a scary time as the Affordable Care Act becomes anything but affordable for families. As an agent, we see both sides of the equation. We are hearing from the carriers how they are paying out millions of dollars on insureds who could not receive coverage before or had underlying conditions that were excluded that are now being treated. We are hearing how they are paying out significantly more than they are taking in with premiums and therefore are taking these drastic steps of increasing premiums, cutting plans, and limiting networks and providers in order to continue to stay in business for the future.
And as agents, we hear and see the clients who are having to pay these doubled and tripled premiums from rates that were already high. While we are looking for a more affordable monthly premium, we find deductibles and out of pocket costs that are anything but affordable for a family in today’s world. I am not sure what family finds a $5,000-$7,000 single deductible with a $10,000-$16,000 out of pocket maximum affordable? I don’t know many families that can afford to pay a monthly premium of $1000-$1800/month for health coverage and still have to pay first dollar coverage when going to the doctor. The point of the Affordable Care Act Plan was to provide insurance for those who didn’t have coverage, however, I feel we are coming full circle to families who have done everything right now having to choose whether they can afford to keep coverage or pay penalties and fear catastrophic health care losses.
Carriers tell us that this is the foreseeable future unless our elected officials make changes. I encourage each of you to research how your candidate feels about health insurance and what their plan for the future is. I encourage you to visit with someone who has to purchase their own healthcare and get their opinion on where things are headed for their family. I strongly encourage you to research plans on Healthcare.gov and see what it would cost for you and your family if you needed coverage and what type of coverage you could afford to get.
Those of us in the healthcare field are trying to assist people as they try to make the best choice for their family. Unfortunately, the options become fewer and fewer as more and more carriers are pulling out of the Exchange or eliminating plans altogether. At Wilson-Hite Insurance, we are here to help you and direct you in the health care world. We have several carriers that we work with and we offer small group, large group, individual and Medicare Supplement plans as well as Vision and Dental. If you are currently on Medicare- you are probably aware that Open Enrollment for the drug plans is currently ongoing through Dec. 7. For those who are looking for healthcare- Open Enrollment is from November 1 through January 31. If you want to make changes to your plan or do not have a plan and want to get coverage, this is the only time you can make these changes. If you currently have a healthcare plan through the exchange, you should make sure they have all your current information for the 2017 year. Please let us know if we can be of service to you and as an American, please exercise your right to vote.
By Tressa Walton