I knew there would be some questions regarding this subject once my post went up, so let me explain to you in simple terms how it was supposed to work, its flaws, and how it affected my family. Keep in mind I am just a normal guy who is not an expert on the subject and I also do not work in the government and thus don’t have access to exact numbers. So the numbers I give will be approximate.
The idea behind the Affordable Healthcare Act(AHA) was that the more wealthy Americans would help cover the cost of the 50 million poor uninsured to get insurance. But it was flawed in two different ways.
The plan was for wealthy Americans to pay more for health insurance so that the poor could get insurance. However, the plan only covers about half of the poor. The super poor already get free healthcare. The poor would be added into the fold in the form of rebates and subsidies. This left about 20 million who would have to pay some money and get some help from the government. These 20 million would only get help if their states took government money which my state refused to take. Without government help you are expected to pay full cost. These 20 million who find themselves in a state that refused government money, are looking at high medical insurance premiums like everyone else, but have no help paying for it. We are one of those 20 million and we live in a state that refused to take government money. Thus the cheapest insurance for us is 1/3 our total take home income. See, we have an income below the standard medium income, but above the poverty line. We make too much for any kind of benefits and make too little to afford health insurance. Who can afford to pay out 1/3 of their total monthly take home pay? Nobody can! Thus, the first major flaw was not covering everyone.
The second major flaw was that they made it a law. In doing so, the insurance and pharma companies, knowing people had to get insurance or be fined, decided to raise rates. Why did congress think that big companies would not get greedy? Don’t you have to have at least an elementary level education to run for public office? Because they made this a law, the big pharma and insurance companies will continue to raise rates and get fat off of the new law. In just one year, my wife’s company insurance went from $200.00 per month with copays for doctors visits and medications, to nearly $300.00 per month with no benefits at all until a $3000.00 deductible is reached. This means we have would have to pay full price for doctor visits and medicines while paying out $300.00 a month for insurance. This comes to an average cost of $600.00 per month and when your take home pay is only $1800.00 per month that is 1/3 of your income gone. This is not even remotely affordable. As the insurance rates have been increasing, so has the cost for every single medicine I take. I have no thyroid. If I don’t take this medicine, I will die. Every time I get a refill the price has increased and I am one step closer to not being able to pay for it. Every year this law remains in effect, puts me one step closer to my grave. I won’t even go into all the other health issues I have. Lets just say, without medical insurance they cannot be resolved either.
With an annual income of $44,000(before taxes, Medicaid, social security, vision insurance,dental insurance, short and long term disability, life insurance,etc) from two jobs and working 70+ hours a week, we cannot afford the cheapest health insurance on the medical insurance exchange which is over $600.00 per month, $7200.00 a year. Her work medical insurance is nearly the same price when you factor in no benefits until the $3000.00 deductible is paid. (Side note: We have no money being taken out for retirement. We cannot afford to do even that.)
After my wife’s hospital visit and the lose of income from it, we now have almost no savings, have two doctors visits a month and have to look forward to increasing costs every time we get more medicine. As much as I want to deny the facts, it is now abundantly clear that someday, in the near future, I will have to either start robbing local pharmacies or simply just die from not taking my medicine.
I hope this has made it more clear for everyone. I have no choice. If I am going to die, I am not going to do it sitting at the table on the Internet. I would rather spend my last year or so, doing what brings me joy. I hope you understand and accept this. We are just one of the 20 million semi-poor Americans, our elected officials have chosen to sacrifice, in the name of Democracy.
Now I know why starving artists throughout the centuries had rich patrons or benefactors who took care of them. If they had not, the arts would have been long lost. Perhaps that shall be the next thing to die.
Have a good life! Bye!