Brace yourself. Chances are your health care premiums and deductibles are going up regardless of whether you get your health insurance through your work or on your own through an Obamacare exchange.
If you’re on your own, you might want to sit down for the bad news. According to a new report by the Department of Health and Human Services, health insurance premiums will increase on average by 25%.
That’s an average. Lucky Arizonans will see a 116% increase, Pennsylvanians a 53% increase, Oklahomans a 69% increase, and so on.
This means if you’re a 27-year-old man buying the second-cheapest silver plan in Arizona, your premiums will more than double from $196 to $422. Unfortunately, you may not be able to find another plan. Insurers have been dropping out of the exchanges. In some places, Americans only have one insurer to choose from, so shopping around isn’t an option.
Americans who get their health insurance through their work will see a smaller insurance hike. Deductibles for these plans have been going up steadily. Average deductibles rose 12% this year according to a Kaiser Family Foundation/Health Research & Educational Trust study.
Politicians sold the so-called Affordable Care Act on the premise that health care costs would go down. President Obama said the law would save families $2500 a year. That savings has yet to materialize. Worse, millions of Americans have lost their health insurance plans because Obamacare regulations forced insurers to cancel plans.
Other Americans are losing their plans because they are no longer financially viable. The “death spiral” predicted by experts at the time of the law’s passage is coming to pass. Too few young, healthy Americans are buying insurance to support older, sicker individuals.
Worse, some people are buying coverage only when they need surgery and are dropping it soon after. This is like buying car insurance after you’ve crashed your car and discontinuing it after the car is fixed. Insurance plans cannot financially sustain themselves on intermittent consumers. So those insurance companies are pulling out of Obamacare exchanges.
So much for the Obamacare selling point ‘if you want to keep your health insurance, you can keep your health insurance.’
“But what now?” you say. “There’s no other options,” we hear over, and over, and over from the people who pushed for Obamacare.
Obviously, that’s completely false. There’s LOTS of options. Obamacare — or it’s successor, single-payer healthcare — is a drop in the bucket compared to the options we can and should have in the United States.
Congress is pushing for health care reforms that are based on consumer-centered, market-based principles that encourage competition and reward responsible behavior, making health care more affordable and encourage innovation. These reforms just make sense.
There’s a lot of other solutions. Check out our Health Care page for a starting point to learn why Obamacare, despite the great intentions, can never work, and other solutions that can.
Obamacare has been an expensive but valuable lesson. When politicians make promises for big government programs, they sound good on the surface, but ultimately cause more harm than good. Without a new direction for health care, Americans will continue to face rising premiums and deductibles and fewer insurance choices.
What are your thoughts? Should we lean into Obamacare, hoping that the damage doesn’t get worse, or should we set a new direction that truly provides freedom and choices to more Americans? Let us know on Facebook!