Well the Healthcare exchange is open for business, as part of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). Yes, there will be a whole lot of hiccups, but that's to be expected from a new governmental program that is changing so much for so many people.
But what does it mean for you? Well, that all depends on your current situation.
Do you have healthcare insurance through your or your spouse's place of work? Then most likely, no changes for you.
Do you pay for your own healthcare insurance? Then you have an individual policy. Most of those are going away, as the ACA is rolling out Individual Policies 2.0.
Oh, no! Change! We don't like that!
Ok, just simmer down a minute. Let's just take a look at what is actually changing.
Most folks I know who pay for their own healthcare insurance (and their spouse's, and their children) pay a lot. Each month. And none of them are millionaires. Health insurance costs a lot.
So this is the whole reason the ACA exists, to subsidize all these millions of folks' healthcare insurance. Kinda like how the government subsidizes corn farms- you pay part of the costs, the government pays part of the costs.
How much does Obama kick in? That depends on your household income. If that's more than $60k a year, don't expect much (if any). But if that's $35k a year, then the subsidy will be substantial. Substantial subsidies, that's a nice alliteration.
And again, this only applies to those without insurance through an employer (group plans). If you have a group plan, just sit on your hands.
If you don't, then start window shopping for plans, such as through our state's exchange, Cover Oregon. Cover Oregon isn't an insurance company, it's just the mall where all the insurance companies set up shop to sell you their plans.
And be sure to get yourself an insurance agent to help you sort this all out. Their help is free!!! So why wouldn't you get an expert to guide you to the right plan- you'll be paying a good amount, so you want to make sure you're getting just what you want!
I know and like Greg Bittke, and you're welcome to email him with any insurance questions you may have, just be sure to get an expert on your side.
Helping you to sort through today's medical system (as best I can!),
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