I'm really trying to be positive and look for the good that will come from the Affordable Care Act. Everyone has a story about how they've been devastated by exorbitant medical care costs and increasing health insurance premiums. I think everyone would welcome some change in this area.
President Obama said recently, "The bottom line is we are making the insurance market better for everyone."
I don't know about everybody else's bottom line, but in 2014, I am losing my existing health insurance plan and being forced into a high-deductible plan with higher premiums, and less choices. My employer admits that the changes are being driven by new federal regulations and states that the new plan will give us all "a way to get smarter about using health care and be more thoughtful about managing costs." That's a nice way of saying, "You're going to pay more." So much for keeping that health care plan.
Our family's out-of-pocket health care expenses rose 40% from 2012 to 2013 (as of August 2013), and we still anticipate more health care expenses this year, which will make that percent increase even higher. In 2014, our family deductible (in-network) will increase by 67%, and our family out-of-pocket maximum (in-network) will increase by 80% compared to 2013 amounts.
I know this is a "first world problem," and that I really need to just be grateful for what I have. Maybe I need to shop around and just buy my own health insurance plan rather than take the one offered to me by my employer. If only there were a web site where I could access a central marketplace of offerings. There are a lot of promises being made about how the ACA will make things better for everyone. Let us be wise and consider the impact these changes are really having on us. Trust the math.