I’ve avoided the topic of Obamacare for a while now. I’m not interested in speaking out, that seems to invite getting drowned out, or ignored. Although I feel compelled to document it. So on the February 15th “final” deadline for Obamacare and the Healthcare Marketplace I am documenting that on the year I turn 45 I am without insurance for the first time.
Here is how it went down. My husband’s family plan premiums were over $450.00 a month, nearly reaching our former yearly deductible of $500.00. We toyed with the idea that maybe we should drop our insurance for year or two so we could get caught up. Think about it; $500.00 a month could double or even triple the time to pay off some debt.
At the same time, we had stopped going to the doctor for “wellbeing care” because every year our deductible changed from $2,000 to $4,000.00 to $6,000.00 and one year it was even $10,000.00. Since we never had the money to meet our deductible we had to save our visits to the doctor for emergency services.
To reiterate; we were paying nearly $500.00 in premiums to the insurance company, which only provided a $20.00 copay, and then struggled to pay the clinic, $50.00, $100.00, $200.00 a month trying to pay off $2,000.00 bill. I had often joked that if the insurance companies gave us our premiums back we could pay the doctor bill. The bill would be paid in just over four months. Mind you these people at the clinic are the people who actually do the work towards our health and we are struggling to pay them.
So when Obamacare came around we thought, finally some relief.
Instead, it didn’t work in our favor, my husband and I decided that he would switch to the single parent plan so that he and our two adult children have coverage and I’d find single coverage elsewhere. And I did. I found a plan for $138.00 a month and then they stopped providing insurance in my state at the end of the year. Now my choices are $250.00 a month to add me to my husband’s family plan or $250.00 a month for my own single plan anywhere else, including the Marketplace. One plan is as low as $236.00, but in my head that is still $250.00.
My employer offers an individual plan for $100.00 a month and I missed it by 300 hours. That is what, an hour and half a day, for a year?
The short answer is to get off my butt and go work some more. The excuse is, “I’ve been there, done that” and is a distraction that keeps me from getting where I am going. (It is a crooked and varied path after all.)
I don’t know what to say except for I don’t fear living without it. The real guilt is that I’m sticking my husband with a $1,200.00 tax fine on top of carrying every other household expense that I can’t cover. Although it’s cheaper than sticking him with $250.00 a month for insurance premiums. I just have to make sure that at the end of the year, I have enough money to pay him back along with covering my own medical bills that I may incur during the year.