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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Obamacare: Real Problems For Real People

‘The First Day Of The New Congress Set In Motion The Republican Majority's Promise To Repeal … Obamacare’

“Republican U.S. Senator Mike Enzi introduced on Tuesday a resolution allowing for the repeal of President Barack Obama's signature health insurance program... The move by the Senate's budget committee chairman on the first day of the new Congress set in motion the Republican majority's promise to repeal the 2010 Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, as its first major legislative item.” (“U.S. Republican Senator Introduces Obamacare Repeal Resolution,” Reuters, 1/3/17)
  • SEN. MIKE ENZI (R-WY): “Americans face skyrocketing premiums and soaring deductibles… Insurers are withdrawing from markets across the country, leaving many families with fewer choices and less access to care than they had before – the opposite of what the law promised. Today, we take the first steps to repair the nation’s broken health care system, removing Washington from the equation and putting control back where it belongs: with patients, their families, and their doctors.” (Sen. Enzi, “Senate To Begin Debate On Obamacare Repeal Resolution,” 1/3/17)
GALLUP: “Americans' assessments of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) … Going forward, the vast majority of Americans want to see the law changed. … [I]t is clear that about eight in 10 Americans favor changing the ACA significantly (43%) or replacing it altogether (37%).” (“Most Americans Want Changes to Affordable Care Act,” Gallup, 11/28/2016)

Obamacare An ‘Obscene’ ‘Nightmare,’ ‘We’re Literally Siphoning Through Our Savings’

FORMER PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON on the consequences of Obamacare: “It’s the craziest thing in the world.” (“Bill Clinton Bashes Obamacare As ‘Crazy System’ While Campaigning For Hillary,” The Washington Times, 10/4/16)
Kentucky Mom: “My family is being pushed out of the middle class by the Obamacare law. …how can we pay almost $1,200 a month on health insurance?” (Sen. McConnell, Constituent Mail)

California Man: ‘I cannot afford an additional bill’ “‘There's only so far one can dwindle a ramen-noodle diet,’ said Christopher Rael of Los Angeles... ‘I cannot afford an additional bill,’ he said. He paid a fine of about $150 for being uninsured in 2014.” (“Health Care Fines Press Millennials as Deadline Nears,” The Associated Press, 1/27/2016)

New York Businesswoman: “I like and support President Obama… However, Obamacare for me has turned out to be a disaster. As a small businessperson, I feel resentment that I have been forced to participate in a system that costs me more money, yet provides me with significantly less: less choice, less care, less coverage, less convenience.” (“4 Reasons Why Obamacare Is A Brand Failure,” New York Daily News, 11/20/16)
  • “I'm mad. No, seriously. Before Obamacare I had health insurance that — while costly — I liked, and met my needs. … Fast-forward to today. My medical insurance is 40% higher than it was, my choice of doctors is significantly more limited, and oh, by the way, most of the physicians I want to see are not in network.” (“4 Reasons Why Obamacare Is A Brand Failure,” New York Daily News, 11/20/16)
Florida Woman: ‘We’re literally siphoning through our savings to be protected’ “[Jules] Stewart and her husband, Kip Koelsch ... chose a silver plan from Humana. They were stunned by the $774 monthly premium, she said — especially because they had to meet a $12,000 deductible before most of the benefits kicked in. ‘We’re literally siphoning through our savings to be protected,’ she said. She also had to change primary care physicians. ... ‘My husband and I are solidly middle class and wonder how folks living just below our level manage to afford Obamacare,’ she said. ‘It doesn’t seem to benefit anyone I know.’” (“Tampa Bay Case Studies Of Obamacare's Costs And Benefits,” Tampa Bay Times, 11/11/2016)

Kansas City Retiree: “‘I’m a sickness away or my wife is a sickness away from going to the poor house I guess because the cost of the insurance is so great,’ said Goodman.” (“Obamacare Costs Up, Choices Down In Missouri And Kansas,” KSHB-TV Kansas City, 11/01/2016)

Florida Small Business Owner: ‘Fears his family will be “open to complete financial ruin”’ “‘Five years ago, small business owner Robert Lust and his wife, Michelle, decided to drop their health insurance. The $2,400 monthly premium was eating up nearly half their household income. The couple couldn’t wait for the launch of the Affordable Care Act. ‘We saw relief coming,’ recalled Lust, now 60. In 2014, the Lusts purchased a silver plan from UnitedHealth that cost about $1,000 per month. But they couldn’t see any of their longtime doctors, and were assigned to a primary care facility that did little more than provide referrals, Lust said. When the monthly premiums rose 40 percent, they decided to ‘bite the bullet’ and buy a platinum plan from Florida Blue that gave them more choice in doctors. In 2016 . . . the plan cost $1,872 a month. ‘Add to that the $4,000 out-of-pocket expenses and all the other things that the plan does not pay for,’ Lust said. . . If the premiums continue to rise like they have in years past, Lust fears his family will be ‘open to complete financial ruin.’” (“Tampa Bay Case Studies Of Obamacare's Costs And Benefits,” Tampa Bay Times, 11/11/2016)

Utah Family: ‘It’s obscene’ “Ana and Oswaldo Demoura got their letter last month: a notice from their health care provider that thousands will soon receive in the mail. ‘I thought that was a mistake. I think it’s obscene,’ said Oswaldo Demoura. Addressed to Mrs. Demoura, it outlines a new coverage plan from Arches Mutual Insurance, putting their monthly premium, with tax credits, at $416.59. The problem with that is they are currently paying $126.22. That means their insurance is going up about 300 percent. … ‘Nobody can afford that, absolutely,’ Oswaldo Demoura said.” (“Health Insurance Premiums Increase In Utah,” KTSU TV, 10/22/15)

Phoenix Senior: ‘The lack of choice is like having empty shelves (and) no food in a third-world country.’ “Phoenix resident Ken Hoag[‘s] wife, Margo, is enrolled in a marketplace plan that will be discontinued as of Dec. 31. He logged on Healthcare.gov to use the website's preview that listed plan details before the Nov. 1 start of enrollment, and he was surprised to find only four plans, all from Ambetter/Health Net. ‘There are no choices really for anybody in Maricopa County,’ Hoag said. ‘The lack of choice is like having empty shelves (and) no food in a third-world country. Do I live in Cuba?’” (“Rate Hikes, New Doctors: Obamacare Exchanges Open To Angst,” USA Today, 11/01/2016)

Oklahoma Woman: “When the health insurance premiums got to the point that they were higher than her mortgage, Renee Powell started to become cynical. ‘There was something in me that just kind of switched,’ said the mother of two from Bartlesville, Okla. ‘I was okay with paying $750, but when it became about $100 more than my housing costs, it upset me.’” (“Politics In Real Life: Rising Health Care Costs Weigh On Voters,” NPR, 5/3/16)

Ohio Small Businesswoman: “My premium should be based on my personal health and my personal health is very excellent, so to see this go up year after year after year and have to choose less desirable coverage every time, then it doesn’t make sense.” (WKRC-TV Cincinnati, 10/28/2016)

Montana Retiree: “Michelle Harris, a 61-year-old retired waitress in northwest Montana, has arthritis in both shoulders. …pays $338 a month for the BlueCross BlueShield plan. Yet with its $4,500 deductible, she says she's doing everything she can to avoid seeing a doctor. Instead, she uses ibuprofen and cold-packs. ‘It hurts, but we don't have that kind of money,’ Harris said in an interview. ‘So I deal with it.’ ... Harris is one of many people with Obamacare plans that feature high out-of-pocket costs that can put health services out of reach... The cheapest plan available to them costs $1,400 a month, with a deductible of about $13,000. If premiums keep rising, Harris says, they probably won't buy coverage in 2018.” (“Some Find Care Unaffordable, Even With Obamacare Coverage,” Bloomberg News, 11/04/2016)

Utah Woman: “Stephanie Haltinner, 30, has an insurance plan with a $13,000 deductible for her and her husband under Obamacare. Her husband is currently looking for work. She’s looking for a different plan for next year. ‘I’m hoping we’ll be able to get something that actually has benefits, so I don’t have to be afraid to go to the doctor for fear of paying hundreds of dollars I can’t afford,’ said Haltinner, who lives in Farmington, Utah and works part time while going to school. For Haltinner, that means being insured, but still having large financial risk.” (“Some Find Care Unaffordable, Even With Obamacare Coverage,” Bloomberg News, 11/04/2016)

Pennsylvania Retiree: “Richard Dean of Bethlehem Township, said he can no longer afford insurance on Healthcare.gov. The retired bank employee said . . . though he has health insurance through retirement benefits, his wife does not. For 2016, Dean found separate coverage for his wife on the exchange. But that plan, which cost $572 a month, is to be discontinued next year and the nearest equivalent he can find would be $917 a month, or $11,004 a year, he said. The deductible would also go up, to $6,800 from $4,500; and after meeting the deductible, the co-insurance would be 30 percent — meaning his wife would still have to pay 30 percent of her bills. ‘I’m praying this is a mistake,’ he said. ‘Who can afford that?’” (“With Obamacare Options Slim In The Lehigh Valley, Many Feel Priced Out Of Health Coverage,” The [Allentown, PA] Morning Call, 11/05/2016)
Michigan Man: Premium increase ‘almost gave me a heart attack when I opened up the envelope,’ “In Michigan, those insured under the ACA can anticipate an average 17 percent premium increase, though many residents says they’re even far beyond those numbers. ‘It almost gave me a heart attack when I opened up the envelope,’ said Scott Winters, West Michigan radio personality and realtor who is self-employed.” (“Health Care Plans To Increase Nationwide Under Affordable Care Act In 2017,” Fox17, 10/18/16)

Florida Retiree: ‘The only reason I'm working is to pay the premiums’ “After a decades-long career as an insurance claims adjustor, Dave Beveridge fulfilled his goal of retiring at 60. He never imagined the cost of health insurance would drive him back into the workforce. But Beveridge, 63, had to take a temporary position with a Tampa insurance company, he said, because the monthly premium for his Affordable Care Act plan is so expensive. ‘The only reason I'm working is to pay the premiums,’ he said. In 2016, he and his wife Nancy paid $868 a month for a bronze plan from Humana. In 2017, the cheapest plan available to them is a $1,267-a-month bronze plan from Florida Blue, he said. The deductible is $6,800.” (“Tampa Bay Case Studies Of Obamacare's Costs And Benefits,” Tampa Bay Times, 11/11/2016)

Illinois Insurance Broker: “We expected they [insurance premiums] would go up. I didn’t . . . expect it would go up 75, 80 percent,’ said Tina Gallagher, an insurance broker in Columbia, Ill. ‘We have a lot of folks — small business owners — who don’t qualify for tax credits, they’re really going to feel the pain of this.’ (“3 Metro East Counties Down To 1 Insurer On Affordable Care Act Exchanges,” St. Louis Public Radio, 10/26/2016)

Mississippi Woman: “‘I can’t afford to get sick after paying for the health insurance,’Ms. [Laura M. Schlett, 44, of Brandon, Miss., a suburb of Jackson] said.” (“Some Health Plan Costs To Increase By An Average Of 25 Percent, U.S. Says,” The New York Times, 10/24/16)

Alaska Teacher: “Juneau Montessori School teacher Laurie Clark loves working with toddlers. But the 61-year-old is not sure how much longer she can afford to do it… [S]he’s paying $1,500 per month for individual health insurance, three times what she paid last year in New Mexico. ‘What choice do I have? ...’ she said.” (“Alaskans Endure Rising Insurance Costs,” Alaska Public Media, 9/21/2016)

Maryland Woman: ‘I am being priced out of the market’ “We are the ‘individually insured’ who don't qualify for a subsidy under the Affordable Care Act, and my premiums are dreadful ... After the 20 percent hike last year from CareFirst, I went from the least expensive silver plan to the cheapest plan of all. This year, it looks like our premiums will rise again — at least another 20 percent. I am guessing my premiums will be hovering around $500 per month. My deductible is the out-of-pocket maximum of $6,500... I have maintained my own insurance for most of my adult life, but now I am being priced out of the market.” (Letter to the Editor, The Baltimore Sun, 9/19/2016)

Illinois Woman: ‘The cheapest health plan she examined … came with a $7,000 deductible’ “Chicago resident Eva Saur, 32, is exactly the kind of healthy person insurers would like to have on their rolls. Saur hasn’t had coverage in nearly a decade, but she takes good care of her health. . . Saur’s tax penalty for being uninsured was a bit more than $600 last year, while the cheapest health plan she examined cost about as much for three months in premiums — and came with a $7,000 deductible.” (“Health-Care Exchange Sign-Ups Fall Far Short Of Forecasts,” The Washington Post, 8/27/2016)

North Carolina Pet Sitter: ‘She's paying the tax penalty and out-of-pocket for doctor visits rather than the ‘unaffordable premium and ridiculously high deductible’ she faced in 2015 of $900 a month with a $5,000 annual deductible’ “Margaret Brawner of Charlotte, a pet sitter who does some contract work, says the rates were already too high. She's paying the tax penalty and out-of-pocket for doctor visits rather than the ‘unaffordable premium and ridiculously high deductible’ she faced in 2015 of $900 a month with a $5,000 annual deductible for a Blue Cross Blue Shield silver plan.” (“As Obamacare Choices Dwindle, Feds Face Consumer, Political Backlash,” USA Today, 8/29/2016)

Kentucky Woman: “Our President lied to us. Not only are we going to lose our insurance but when go to a different policy-we have to pay more. We will never be able to retire-we are 58 & 56 years old-we will have to work the rest of our [lives] just to pay for our insurance.” (Sen. McConnell, Constituent Mail)

North Carolina Woman: “It’s been aggravating to have to see the policy that you were perfectly happy with doesn’t exist anymore and you can’t keep it.” Reporter: “For the past three years, Ruth-Anne Grimes says the health insurance plan that cost her $381 a month served her well. Then this letter…” Grimes: “It says you’ll no longer – the plan will no longer be offered in 2014.” Reporter: “Because it does not meet the qualifications of the Affordable Care Act. But there’s another plan available: for $562 a month.” … Grimes: “It’s been aggravating to have to see the policy that you were perfectly happy with doesn’t exist anymore and you can’t keep it, you have to go on another plan. … the Affordable Care Act did not make it very affordable for me.” (WRAL-NC, 11/7/13)

Tags: Obamacare, Real Problems, Real People, repeal Obamacare, Republicans, voters To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 2:00 PM - Post Link

1 Comments:

Anonymous Dawn Williams Nevel said...

COMPLETE REPEAL! Get the government out of it!

1/05/2017  

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