Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Cancellations of existing individual policies are becoming a huge problem for Obamacare, and NBC reports that the administration knew this would happen

People with individual plans around the country are sometimes getting notices from their insurance companies warning them that their policies will be cancelled, because the plans are not in compliance with Obamacare.  That forces the policyholder to go to the exchange in his state (possibly the federal plan, with its non-functional website) and possibly pay much higher premiums. The notices often say that policies cannot be renewed after December 31, 2013.
All the plans (bronze to platinum) offer pretty much the same mandatory coverage.  It sounds like everyone is forced to pay premiums to support services that they may not personally need, like mental health or pregnancy. Not only are people paying for those with pre-existing conditions (in the sense of juvenile diabetes, for example); they are paying for demographic uses that others need but that don’t affect them personally. Critics say this like the federal government requiring everyone to own a Cadillac if they own a car at all. 
Individual health plans in New York State are all already in compliance with Obamacare, which was apparently heavily influenced by a few states (like New York, Massachusetts, Vermont, Minnesota, etc). 
I have not heard anything all from my Medicare Supplemental, which seems unaffected.
However, I’m told that doctors are being dropped from the Medicare plan.  I just made my Medicare physical appointment yesterday (for early November, in Arlington VA) and found the doctor had not changed any of his own practice. 

Lisa Myers and Hannah Rappleye report on NBC that the Obama administration knew that many, perhaps even most people on individual health insurance in many states, would not be able to keep their individual health insurance, link here
The president has been saying, though, that if you like your insurance you’ll be able to keep it. 
Kaiser reports on the matter, saying that the cancellation notices started in August, here

However, on ABC World News Tonight, some from the Obama administration say that individuals are still having trouble finding the cheapest plans. to which they will be entitled by law, because the website is not fully functional.  The prices available should improve when the website is fixed. 
The stories on whether employers are putting people into part time over Obamacare (as they reportedly did for the first half of 2012) are mixed.  But there really do seem to be real problems in smaller communities, especially in the South and Midwest.   

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