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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by jancollc View Post
    You have to be careful- if you let your income get too high you'll get clobbered at tax time...
    This is worth repeating. In a nutshell, depending on your level of income, you get a subsidy on the premiums. The subsidy is given, in variable amounts, to people earning up to 400% of the federal poverty level for your family size in your location. For a small business owner who is single and living alone, it doesn't take much to exceed this. For the same owner supporting a family of 4, it's likely you'll qualify for a subsidy.

    But, while the subsidy is variable based on income, it's not linear. The subsidy amount for someone nearing the top of the accepted income level is still fairly significant, despite almost not qualifying. As such, the difference in premium for someone earning 399% of the poverty level and then $1 more into 400% can truly be in the low 5 figures. This has become known as the Obamacare cliff, and is something to plan around very carefully.

    Lots of people who don't understand how taxes work like to make the comment of a small raise bumping them up a tax bracket, creating a net loss in take home pay - which we all know isn't true - but in the case of the O'care subsidy, it absolutely is (and the difference is paid to the IRS, not to the ins company).



    For what you're doing (cash paying everything, and using it for catastrophic issues), you'll be looking at a bronze plan, because the 'catastrophic' plan isn't available to those over 25 years old. Most (maybe all? not sure) bronze plans will allow you to open and use an HSA. Do this. Contributions are a tax deduction (even if you don't itemize), and distributions that are used for qualified medical expenses (which are pretty much any medical bill a normal person will get - limitations are generally things like elective cosmetic surgeries and whatnot) are not taxed, so it's a good way to lower your taxable income by a little.

    At the very least, contribute whatever you need for the medical bills you do have, and spend them out of there, but if you're a saver, the excess contributions can be invested in the market, and the growth is also tax free. Once you turn 65, you'll be able to also spend that money, tax free, on health insurance premiums. Our HSA is our first priority to max out contributions - 401k and Roth come after that is filled.

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  3. #22
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    We were signed up for a health insurance plan through the health insurance market (healthcare.gov). However, we just recently got a group plan for our small shop. Skipped the broker, and contacted each of the major providers in our area directly. Lots of confusing hoops to jump through, but we are paying a lot less for better insurance through the same providers.

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    Also, to all the people who jump to the defense of our medical system here, WTF!? Have you had any major medical requirements recently? Even here it is a nightmare of long lines, red-tape, and paperwork.

    Medical bankruptcy isn't just for the catastrophically ill anymore. I have multiple friends with huge piles of medical debt from having normal childbirths while insured. Costs are rising exponentially. It's not even debatable anymore; we are at crisis level.

    And for those using medical tourists (such as Canadians) as a metric for measuring the quality of our healthcare... Gee, I guess Mexico is really kicking ass then, look at all the people heading down there for operations.

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    So a heads up- I made a mistake and landed on a private site- Obamacare.something and that is why the vultures showed up.

    One thing that happened- I did take one of these calls before I had figured that out.
    I tried to wade through what was at offer.
    A couple take homes-
    -You get sick your premium will change- no indication of to what.
    -If you get sick- “like cancer” “ they will send you 20,000 dollars.”
    -On request to forward quote- refused and wants another phone appointment to go over policies so I can choose.

    And that is what I get for answering the phone.
    It seems like all sorts of hard sell nonsense and very little disclosure.
    A cash payout is supposed to impress me...what’s that 20k- one chemo lab visit.

    Looks like I am on hold till the next open enrollment and will just cash out for care between now and then.

    Thanks guys- I did find I qualify for about $450/month under normal enrollment.

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  7. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rapid_Tech View Post
    Too many people want shit but want others to pay for it.
    That's not how this works...

    People don't 'want' healthcare, it's not a luxury item like a fancy car. People NEED healthcare, and access to healthcare should be a basic human right. It's that simple.

    We actually don't go far enough. Kids go to school without glasses because their parents can't afford them. Cancer patients have to pay for their prescriptions even though they can't work. Basic dental, eye-care and prescriptions should all be part of socialized health care.

    No-one is saying they want something and you're gonna pay for it. I help pay for your healthcare, you help pay for mine. When you're having a hard time, I got you. When I'm having a hard time, you look after me. Together we both help support the people that have less than we do. Giving everyone in our country access to the basics of life is a cost we all should share. It's a cost worth paying.

    Do you want to live in a country where the poorest die young because the can't even afford the simple dignity of going to the hospital? Or do you want to live in a country where we all look after each other and work to make everyone's life better?

    Saying you don't want to pay your part of that (because people 'want shit for free') is just silly. That's like saying you don't believe people should be able to stop you from polluting...

    Yeah it's cheaper if you just dump that shit in the river, but it's everyone's water bud.

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    Aaron, get back in your lane.

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    The most unique thing about US health care is that about a trillion each year goes to people who do pretty much nothing to advance either the care or health of our citizens (whether it is citizens with employer-paid insurance, buying their own insurance, buying subsidized insurance, or having paid into Medicare). Just money skimmed at every point and put in their own pockets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aarongough View Post
    That's not how this works...

    People don't 'want' healthcare, it's not a luxury item like a fancy car. People NEED healthcare, and access to healthcare should be a basic human right. It's that simple.

    We actually don't go far enough. Kids go to school without glasses because their parents can't afford them. Cancer patients have to pay for their prescriptions even though they can't work. Basic dental, eye-care and prescriptions should all be part of socialized health care.

    No-one is saying they want something and you're gonna pay for it. I help pay for your healthcare, you help pay for mine. When you're having a hard time, I got you. When I'm having a hard time, you look after me. Together we both help support the people that have less than we do. Giving everyone in our country access to the basics of life is a cost we all should share. It's a cost worth paying.

    Do you want to live in a country where the poorest die young because the can't even afford the simple dignity of going to the hospital? Or do you want to live in a country where we all look after each other and work to make everyone's life better?

    Saying you don't want to pay your part of that (because people 'want shit for free') is just silly. That's like saying you don't believe people should be able to stop you from polluting...

    Yeah it's cheaper if you just dump that shit in the river, but it's everyone's water bud.
    This would be fantastic, ideal, and is something certainly to wish for.

    As they say. . . Wish in one hand. . .

    You’ve clearly lived a wonderful life, with intelligent healthy people surrounding you. I’ve worked in factories with ignorant foul people who are exactly the reason I will never support a system like you propose. Their kids went to school without glasses because they couldn’t afford them because they were F’ING IDIOTS. Too stupid even to learn. Just smart enough to suck air and do the least necessary to not get fired. Go home each night, drink a 24 pack and have a bag of chips for dinner. Coffee and a candy bar for breakfast, a few mountain dews and a bag of chips for lunch.

    Our medical system is terrible, and I pray OFTEN that my children will not need it.

    If it were up to me, all of organized health care would disappear. You pay, for your services. Period. My family doctor closed because he was regulated out of business. He tried to join a network only to have his prices hiked beyond reasonable. He got so fed up he retired. Before he closed I went for a visit and tried to pay cash, they couldn’t accept cash, they had no idea what a visit cost or even how to charge.

    TRboatworks, glad to hear you found a plan for a fairly reasonable cost. I hope you don’t need it.

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  13. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Finsta View Post
    Aaron, get back in your lane.
    Yes sir! Sorry for the derailment OP!

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeteM View Post
    The most unique thing about US health care is that about a trillion each year goes to people who do pretty much nothing to advance either the care or health of our citizens (whether it is citizens with employer-paid insurance, buying their own insurance, buying subsidized insurance, or having paid into Medicare). Just money skimmed at every point and put in their own pockets.
    Do you notice that no one ever attacks this ? They get all worked up over whether it is socialist or independent or responsible or flaky or whether there are lines or not, but as far as I know I have never seen anyone seriously go after the bullshit costs of the way US medicine is set up.

    Had the same experience as Fat Grunt, and this in Stanford Medical Center - no one, including the charge-you lady at the checkout desk, had any idea what anything cost. (So much for medical tourism, it was a shit experience which I will not go into.)

    Also met no one in Canada this summer who would even consider changing to the US medical system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aarongough View Post
    That's not how this works...

    People don't 'want' healthcare, it's not a luxury item like a fancy car. People NEED healthcare, and access to healthcare should be a basic human right. It's that simple.

    We actually don't go far enough. Kids go to school without glasses because their parents can't afford them. Cancer patients have to pay for their prescriptions even though they can't work. Basic dental, eye-care and prescriptions should all be part of socialized health care.

    No-one is saying they want something and you're gonna pay for it. I help pay for your healthcare, you help pay for mine. When you're having a hard time, I got you. When I'm having a hard time, you look after me. Together we both help support the people that have less than we do. Giving everyone in our country access to the basics of life is a cost we all should share. It's a cost worth paying.

    Do you want to live in a country where the poorest die young because the can't even afford the simple dignity of going to the hospital? Or do you want to live in a country where we all look after each other and work to make everyone's life better?

    Saying you don't want to pay your part of that (because people 'want shit for free') is just silly. That's like saying you don't believe people should be able to stop you from polluting...

    Yeah it's cheaper if you just dump that shit in the river, but it's everyone's water bud.
    Why is it when people (big city/leftist types) are protesting that they want more money for healthcare they aren't screaming to have their taxes raised at the same time to be able to pay for it? Yet the same people will gladly ask that the taxes on the rich be raised! Sure, a basic level of health care is good to have in our country but when we start paying for Timmy to become Tammy that should not be a burden on taxpayers. But at the end of the day, a hospital is a business, and business is all about the $$$.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rapid_Tech View Post
    Why is it when people (big city/leftist types) are protesting that they want more money for healthcare they aren't screaming to have their taxes raised at the same time to be able to pay for it?
    By the same token, why is it that people (countryside/rightist types) are not protesting that there's a trillion dollars wasted in the health care system we have, and why are we not figuring out this real problem, and why are taxes so high because of this embedded graft and big government corruption ?

    I mean, if there were any truly conservative types around to comment ...

    I can tell you what my grandparents would be doing - attacking the problem at its root, not gnashing their teeth and wailing about the idle poor.

    But at the end of the day, a hospital is a business, and business is all about the $$$.
    Historically that has not been the case. What a brave new world we live in !

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  19. #33
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    Thank you aarongough for speaking the truth that these propaganda eating folks dont want to hear.
    the rich are screwing us over, taste of tRump?
    mitch the bitch anyone?eat it,feed it to your kids.
    I want outa this plc.
    Peace, oh hell,love too!
    Gw

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  21. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by aarongough View Post
    For better or worse I have a fair bit of experience with the Canadian healthcare system, both personally and through friends and family. My experiences have been overwhelmingly positive. Sometimes people wait for care, but generally speaking those that really need care get it quickly.

    Yes some Canadians visit the USA for healthcare. Wealthy Canadians who don't want to wait for whatever length of time they might have to wait here.

    However:
    • People in the USA pay more for healthcare than any other country (reference)
    • People in the USA have the WORST healthcare outcomes of any developed country (reference)
    • The USA has the highest rate of death during/after childbirth of any developed nation (reference)
    • The USA has the highest rate of infant death of any developed nation (reference)
    • 66% of all bankruptcies in the USA are because of medical debt (reference)


    Let all that sink in for a moment. People in the USA pay FAR more for healthcare than any other nation, while getting the poorest care in many measurable ways.

    I can't think of a greater tragedy than a new father going bankrupt while trying to pay the medical bills for his wife who died giving birth to their child... Can you? That's the reality of the american health-care system.

    You exaggerate a good deal. I have terrific health care that I worked many years to
    earn.

    When you speak of infant mortality, did you factor in the 50 million babies that have been gouged out and murdered since 1973?

    https://www.desmoinesregister.com/st...ecks/24530159/

    American is always capitalized.

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    Health care and insurance costs are two different things.

    I have terrific health care- which I did not "earn"- but which I did find, and take advantage of. I live in a rural area, I have been going to the same clinic for 25 years, the same doctor for 15 or so. She knows everybody in the valley, and its all pretty direct, personal, and caring.

    This has nothing to do with how I pay for it.

    You find a good specialist, they cost money- a measly $3500 a year in an HSA wouldnt have gone very far when I had a pretty mild outpatient kidney stone procedure a few years ago- with "good" insurance (obamacare subsidized, buy no socialist doctors or hospitals) I was still out of pocket about ten grand on that one.
    There is always small print, details you didnt expect.

    If it had been something really serious, like cancer or a brain tumor, its not uncommon for after insurance expenses to hit a quarter million.

    People with good jobs and savings go broke all the time when their medical bills hit a million bucks.

    again, doesnt matter how much you have paid in premiums before this, or how honest and moral and righteous you are.
    Insurance only goes so far.

    Me, I dont mind paying taxes- as a business owner, I have been paying property taxes, utility taxes, excise taxes, sales taxes, employee SS, Medicare, Workers Comp, and unemployment taxes, income taxes, and a few more for 40 years.

    I dont mind paying my share of health care, either- Until ObamaCare, I paid in the range of ten grand to fifteen grand a year for combined health costs, for me and my two kids.
    I am an average american, not some kind of grifter, but the fact that Obamacare means I dont have to pay $1200 a month, in addition to the actual health care costs, means I can continue to live and work and pay employees.

    I think a lot of people here have been on somebody's tit, in terms of "the company" paying their insurance, as well as half their SS and Medicare, and that slants their view of what things really cost.

    My kid broke his arm senior year- two hours in the ER, an xray and a cast- $3500 out of pocket, because back then my deductible was $5k.

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    We have gone over this in other threads.
    I am a big fan of revenues collected by the government being spent on those things which are of benefit to the wellbeing of the nation.
    Military, judiciary, basic research, infrastructure, regulation of business and the stewardship of public lands and the environment, social welfare and healthcare.

    I look at health like education: the society is directly rewarded by members being qualified and capable of participation.
    As they say- we are a nation of men.
    Support for their wellbeing and advancement is in the national interest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trboatworks View Post
    We have gone over this in other threads.
    I am a big fan of revenues collected by the government being spent on those things which are of benefit to the wellbeing of the nation.
    Military, judiciary, basic research, infrastructure, regulation of business and the stewardship of public lands and the environment, social welfare and healthcare.
    Sure, TR, but you have to admit - there is a huge problem. See above, $3500 for a simple fracture. A couple hours waiting, an x-ray and a cast, $3500.

    That's ridiculous.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Newman109 View Post
    You exaggerate a good deal. I have terrific health care that I worked many years to
    earn.

    When you speak of infant mortality, did you factor in the 50 million babies that have been gouged out and murdered since 1973?

    FACT CHECK: 50 million abortions claim checks out

    American is always capitalized.
    Did you even click on the links? Reading is your friend. It specifically states live births...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rapid_Tech View Post
    Why is it when people (big city/leftist types) are protesting that they want more money for healthcare they aren't screaming to have their taxes raised at the same time to be able to pay for it? Yet the same people will gladly ask that the taxes on the rich be raised!

    But at the end of the day, a hospital is a business, and business is all about the $$$.
    I have no issue with higher taxes, PLEASE TAX ME! I will benefit as much as anybody. As a small business owner I don't get coverage from my employer which would pay for dental, optical and prescription meds. I can afford to pay for them out of pocket, but I'd be happier if I got taxed extra and everyone (including me) got the safety net.

    The rich should be taxed more! And when I say rich, I do not mean 'upper middle class' which is what we probably both are, I mean the super wealthy that earn more in a week than we do in a year. They should pay a greater burden of taxes, and they should be happy to be in a position to do so. Protecting them from taxes because you think you're going to join the ranks one day is silly.

    A hospital is not a normal business. It is a provider of life critical care. It is not about the '$$$' as so calmly assert. That's like saying your local fire brigade should be shut down if it's not turning a profit. Should the fire truck turn up to your burning house and then only start the pumps once you've handed over your savings? Some things just need to be done, regardless of whether or not they're 'profitable'.

    When it's all said and done all of this comes down to a single question: Do you believe people other than yourself are deserving of being looked after and cared for to the same level that you are? If the answer is truly yes then all of this is a pretty easy sell.

    The problem comes when you start thinking that some people are less deserving of care. The fat guy mentioned above who eats doritos and mountain dew for lunch, 'Tammy' that you mention. These are PEOPLE. With full lives and families and others who care for them, with stories that you probably haven't bothered to learn.

    Everyone deserves at least the basics of life.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aarongough View Post
    Everyone deserves at least the basics of life.
    I think this is more the root of the issue than anything. I grew up, as my wife calls it, "poor". I never considered myself poor. I had more than others, never went hungry, and always had a roof over my head.

    Those were the basics of life.

    I once listened to a speech given by a politician who said the poverty line should be $100k in the US, because they simply could not understand how someone could survive with any less.

    When I went to college, I worked 3 part time jobs and paid my tuition, books, and lived on what was left. During the summer I worked my butt off to save money for the coming school year. I lived on $18k a year. I lived well. I would not consider myself poor. I had a nice apartment, a little money in the bank, drove a decent car. My wife considered that apartment a slum, my truck a piece of shit, and I was broke. Why she married me, I have no idea . I remember working 80-100 hrs a week in the summer, one night buying groceries and the guy in front of me had a pile of food, food I wouldn't afford. He pulled out his WIC card to pay for it.

    In my example above, the "fat guy" as you called him, was one of my coworkers. I got to know him very well. There were many like him that I worked with. They were making $25-$30/hr and couldn't pay their bills, while at the same time I was making $9-12/hr. They were idiots. Yes, they were PEOPLE. They were STUPID people. I have worked hard for what I have, I see no reason that I should pay a dime to take care of THEM, when THEY refuse to take care of themselves. In the US we have inalienable rights, and I strongly believe in those rights, those rights protect you whether you are stupid, ignorant, left, right, or even a Tammy.

    Everyone does deserve the basics of life. What many are arguing for, far exceed the "basics".

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