Category Archives: Insurance

Feb 18th Without Insurance and I’m Still Here

Not having insurance isn’t what I expected.

I guess I wasn’t expecting anything different.  My husband paid the premiums and I paid the medical bills. This was an unspoken agreement between us.  Besides, in most cases I decided if someone went to the doctor or not, so I paid the bill.  If my husband decided that he had to go to the doctor, he paid his own bill … unless I was kicking his butt out the door and dragging him there, then I paid the bill.  Logical.

Most of my whining about insurance and the ever-increasing deductible was in defense of my husband paying a such a huge premium.  When the kids became adults and were taking on their own bills, no one was going to the doctor because no one could afford racking up the expense before insurance kicked in, yet my husband was still doling out $460.00 – $480.00 a month.  A MONTH!

It seems medical insurance is for people who have a couple extra thousand dollars available to spend.  I know every time I went in for my yearly well-being check I racked up about $700.00 in one check-up.  Well that had to stop, what if we had an emergency and I had to cover a deductible.  One year I had a $10,000.00 deductible, if I was having trouble paying $700.00 for one visit how am I going to come up with $10,000.00?

If we look at other spending habits, anytime someone is looking to spend $2000.00 for a car, home repair, or even a vacation, they go to the bank and take out a loan.  With a loan, payments are smaller than insurance premiums and a bank allows more than a year to pay it back.

I’m not saying this is a solution.  I am making a point that medical expenses are handled differently.

You know, I wouldn’t mind paying my clinic a monthly stipend to bank against any future charges I might create.  This would keep any clinic running and keep people employed.  If I rack up charges beyond what I had paid I could raise my payment.  Something else would have to be figured out for hospital charges, but hey, since all those after hour clinics are open now, I haven’t set foot in the hospital or its ER in nearly a decade.  Something could be worked out.

I really liked the Heath Savings Account idea until I realized we didn’t get cheaper premiums.  Not by the time this option was available to us through our employer.

All this is not to say that I will never ever have insurance again.  I just don’t have insurance right now. So I figure fine, I will just set aside money every month before I incur a bill.   If I rack up any medical bills, I will just pay them.  That part still isn’t going to bed any different with or without insurance.  The bonus will be that it won’t disappear when the next year starts.

Well, unless something drastic happens this year, then I might be in trouble.

Here is the thing though.  I don’t really fear that something drastic is going to happen.  I don’t live in fear of not having insurance.  I thought I’d be a little more paranoid than that.

Feb. 15 and I’m Without Insurance For the First Time.

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.

This sucks.

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