Yesterday's mail included a nice big envelope from Blue Cross, one of many since the "Affordable Care Act" passed.
The last big envelope was to inform me that my rates would go up 25%.
This time, to tell me that my policy no longer meets federal standards and although I will be able to keep my plan, no one else will ever be allowed to sign up for it. Meaning that eventually the pool of people will shrink, the average age of participants will rise, and my rates will increase because of it.
Not to worry..., I have 30 days to decide if I want to change to one of their new plans, which they warn me will probably be more expensive than my current plan. I can also switch to one of their new more expensive plans if my rates should happen to be increased anytime before December 2013 (way to look out for me Blue Cross!).
The new plan benefit pamphlets don't include any prices, I have to call to get those. I can only imagine how expensive they are considering the new "federal standards".
I made a few sacrifices in coverage to get my current plan into a price range I didn't feel sick about. For example, generic only prescription coverage, limited office visits, higher deductible.
But those plans are no longer available. Their current plans must now include coverage for "kids" up to 26 years of age, no lifetime maximum and 100% paid preventive care. Long gone are the plans that had a generic only prescription option, as well as the "catastrophic" plans that had low premiums and higher deductibles for people like me that try to stay healthy and don't run to the doctor every time they get they sniffles.
So much for keeping your current plan.
So much for making health care more affordable.
So now instead of enriching the lives of my kids by sending them to private school, or signing them up for music lessons, I get to spend all my spare money on "affordable" health care that I rarely ever use, but don't dare not have.
The good news: maybe if we slack a little more, try a little less, and lose some of our ambition and desire to achieve, we might (fingers crossed) qualify for this magical new public option I keep hearing so much about!
As a side note: I can't wait til "the Affordable Care Act" is repealed, and then my rates and policy can just go back to what it before it was passed. (Ha!)
UPDATE: I was able to uncover the new policy pricing on the Blue Cross website. For a plan similar to my current plan, albeit with a higher deductible and now including the new federal standards, the cost would be almost 25% higher than I am currently paying. Mind you, my rates were already increased shortly after the bill passed, making for a sweet 50% increase in policy rates since Obamacare was signed into law.
So I guess when Obama said insurance costs would decrease $2,500 a year for families, he actually meant increase.