Affordable Care Act - Not so Affordable

The Geeksultant's picture

My blog may not always be based around technology. For me, a blog should be be what I am feeling or thinking today.

Case in point.

I voted for Obama and the democratic party. There, I said it. Have they done some good things? Yes. Have they done everything right? Hell no.

Now that I am 100% self employed, insurance is at the forefront of my to-do list.

Some facts about the so called Affordable Care Act.

1. You have to have health insurance, or you pay a penalty on your taxes. Each year, since the ACA has gone into effect, the penalties have gotten stiffer. In my mind, that's extortion. Period.
2. If you earn less than certain income amounts for single, married or family, you get government subsidies. Paid by those of us that earn more. Again, extortion comes to mind.
3. If you earn more that those thresholds, you get zip, nada, no assistance. Because not only should you be supporting the less wealthy, but you should be paying your own way 100%. Again, extortion.

Now, let us look at a few examples.

Case # 1

I am a 25 year old, self employed artist. I earn $20,000 a year in income. Up until Obamacare, I used the local free clinic when I was sick, and was able to get cheap or free prescriptions from the pharmaceutical companies.
With Obamacare, I am forced to purchase insurance or pay a huge tax penalty I cannot afford. So, I chose to buy the insurance. I have elected the lowest plan, a bronze plan. I pay $560 a month and Obamacare pays all but $1 of that amount. Sounds good so far. However, my plan has a $13,500 deductible. The plan pays nothing until I pay the deductible in full. Based on my $20k income, I will never be able to use this plan as I'll never meet, nor be able to pay for the $13,500 deductible. So, that $560 a month, or $6,720 per year, that is being paid by other tax payers, goes directly into the insurance company pocket and does no one, except the insurance company any good. Plus, since I now have insurance, I no longer qualify for the free clinic nor the discounted or free prescriptions. Thanks Obama.

Case # 2

I am a 50 year old, self employed I.T. consultant. I earn above the threshold for government assistance under Obamacare. I have to pay 100% of the premiums out of my pocket. I also chose the low end bronze plan. My cost is $650 per month, (Yes, your plan costs more if you earn more). I also have a $13,500 deductible that I have to meet before the plan pays penny one. Oh, and once it does pay, it's only 60%. I have to pay the other 40% for all charges above the deductible. Thanks Obama.

Both cases are real world cases. Not made up. Now, how is this affordable healthcare? The consultant pays a higher premium for the same policy than the artist who get's his for $1 a month. Basically, the consultant is paying the premium twice. Once on his own, and once via his taxes for the artist. However, at the end of the day, neither has viable coverage. Even if either had a catastrophic event, with ten's of thousands of dollars in medical bills. Both would end up bankrupt as neither could pay the outstanding bills. The artist, on $20k, will never be able to satisfy the deductible alone, and the consultant, even if he pays his premium and deductible, he's $21,300 out of pocket before the plan pays. .... and then, it only pays 60%.

Now it's been said, that most of the insurance companies are owned by republicans who are sticking it to Obamacare by having these outrageous rates. Oh, and making a killing in cash while doing so.

The truth, by process of elimination, is simple. Neither party, Democratic nor Republican, gives a hoot about their constituents. It's all about power and the almighty dollar, and the American public takes another one for the team.

Go figure.

Oh, and thanks Obama.