I have gotten quite a few phone calls over the last 24 hour regarding the Supreme Courts decision to uphold the PPACA ( OBAMACARE). The fact is that parts of the law have already gone into effect, and the bulk of the law goes into effect January 1, 2014.
Let me tell you what the PPACA does not address.. the life style of Americans. The obesity level in this country is high. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention more than 1/3 or all Americans are obese (35.7%). All of the health insurance in the world will not change that. Look at the number of people who work out on a given day. I think that number is probably low. According to the International Health Club Association 50 % of all new health club members quit within the first six months after joining, and 90% stop coming regularly to the club within the first 90 days. We do not take care of ourselves. That is problem number one. The PPACA really does nothing to change that. The law includes preventative care with $0 co-pay. I keep hearing the word FREE preventative care. The more “FREE stuff” the higher the premium. It is not free it is in the premium.
Now what happens when all insurance becomes guarantee issue. Let’s look at the State of New York I just went to EHEALTHINSURANCE.com. I used a New York City Zip code of 10001. The premium for a $5800 deductible Health Savings Account for my family of four is quoted as $1030 per month. In that state, while currently not mandated that you purchase insurance. If you do apply you cannot be denied. You can wait until you get sick to purchase so that is why the premium is high. In Illinois where I live, I used my Zip Code and found basically the same plan for $331. Illinois is an underwritten state. Now if everyone is paying for insurance in New York, that premium should come down somewhat. In Illinois, however, that number will go up. The healthy will basically offset the sick. That makes sense except, when you chose not to buy insurance and pay a fine. In the New York example the fine ( or I am sorry now it is called a Tax, that’s right the Government did raise taxes to pay for this) is $285 the first year then moves to $2085 in year three. That is an annual fine. What is a better deal paying a $2085 fine or paying $1030 per month? When people start opting out of insurance to pay the tax (fine), health insurance premiums have to go up. When you wait until you get sick to purchase insurance the cost has to go up. Consider it kind of like trying to homeowners insurance once your house caught fire.
If you want to fix the health care system, here are some ideas..
Give people an incentive to be healthy ( lower premium)
Give people an incentive to buy insurance and not a penalty if they do not ( maybe a tax credit for purchasing insurance)
Let them chose if they want prevenative services covered on their plan or not. I do not mind paying $150 for doctor visit or an exam, just as my auto insurance does not cover my oil changes, but I still get one every 3000 miles. I keep my health insurance catestrophic. I am worried about the big things in life.
Everyone will have health insurance, I guess that is a good thing, it will not make our premiums go down unless we get healthier!
Thanks for reading!!!!!!!!!!!