Remember at a Town Hall meeting in New Hampshire on August 11, 2009, the President said, “if you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.” I have been in the insurance business for many years, and as we have migrated toward the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, it became increasingly more obvious that you would not be able to keep your health care plan. Many of the insurance carriers have left the market. Since the bill became a law, some of the carriers that I have worked with over the years such as Principal Financial, American Community, World Insurance and American Republic, have left the Health Insurance Market. If you had one of those carriers, guess what, you cannot keep your health care plan.
This weekend several of my clients insured with Celtic insurance, received letters that their plans are not health care reform compliant and they will be terminated effective December 31, 2013. That is a nice piece of mail to receive. Celtic is a carrier I have placed a lot of business with over the years. I was featured in their first quarter of 2012 newsletter as their featured agent for the amount of production I did with that company. Celtic is based in Chicago and is owned by Centene Corporation (CNC).
While I have seen most of the carriers new plans to be compliant with the law, I knew my personal insurance plan would likely change. I love my Health Savings Account (H.S.A). I have a $5000 deductible and I pay all charges up to that amount. I have also funded the savings account for the medical expenses I may incur.
Today, I received the letter from Blue Cross/Blue Shield of IL. The first paragraph of the letter states, “The new health care law is effective January 1, 2014, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of IL (BCBSIL) is offering brand-new plans with important benefits and features. This means the BCBSIL health insurance plan you now have will no longer be available for renewal as of December 31, 2013.”
It goes on to tell me they will send me information in the near future of a similar plan or a different plan that would be available. Now I knew this day was coming, but it hits you harder when it actually applies to you. As a broker, I can usually figure out what kind of insurance is best for each client. As a parent, and husband, I know what kind of insurance is best for my family. I also believe that health insurance should be kind of like auto or homeowners insurance in so much as, they are designed to pay for things you cannot pay for yourself. My auto insurance does not pay for my oil changes on my car because it is preventive. I still get the oil changed every 3,000 miles even though my insurance does not pay for it. I go see a doctor periodically and I have no problem paying the $100 every so often to see the doctor. I do not need a co-pay of some kind to encourage me to go to the doctors. If I am sick I will go. I do not need maternity on my health plan as I am no longer having children.
I have also always had health insurance even when I was 23 years old and only made about $17 or $18,000 per year.
So I am curious when the President of the United States of America said, if you like your health plan you can keep, which health plan was he talking about?