October 25, 2013

Retirement Advice: My First-Hand Experience With Healthcare.Gov

 
Updated information: see end of post
 
 



Not surprisingly, recently I received a letter from my health insurance company telling me my present individual coverage is not compliant with the new law. But, not to worry, they had a policy that I could have without any effort on my part. Starting January 1st I would become enrolled in this totally compliant policy. Hidden somewhere on the third page was the rather important information: my rate would go up 18% (the same for the last 4 years) and my coverage would be on par with the a Silver plan (one of the four levels of coverage under the Affordable Care Act).


I assume they were counting on me just choosing the easiest option: do nothing and I'd have more expensive and poorer coverage. Also, they may have figured I will start Medicare in May of next year so I will probably just pay the extra money for four months.

I didn't like those options and I wanted first hand experience with the new insurance marketplace available to anyone who doesn't have group coverage or insurance like Medicare. Betty also has a rather poor individual plan and she wants to explore her options, too. So, I decided to go to Healthcare.gov and see what would happen.

I will provide some details of my experiences, but give you the payoff right now: I spent part of four days and a total of  five hours on-line and found a policy that is superior to the one I would be shifted to and it costs almost $200 a month less. I do qualify for a tax credit but even if I had not used it, my marketplace policy would still be $75 a month cheaper with much better coverage.

Some details:

*It took me about three hours over a several day time frame to complete the on-line application. The process is rather straightforward thought there were some questions and responses I missed and had to go back and fix the mistakes. The problem is the software. It is poor. It is full of glitches and is not ready for the demands being put on it. Several times I had to sign off and come back in again. The software froze at times and wouldn't advance. The application could have been completed much quicker if the people designing the software had done an adequate job. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that the government has spent hundreds of millions on software that doesn't work right. Software rates a D-.

*There were 111 policies for me to choose from in the Marketplace in Arizona, spread across the Bronze, Silver, Gold, and (most expensive) Platinum choices. Since my present company wanted to sell me a Silver level policy I concentrated on those policies. Choices rates an A.

* After applying some but not all of my available tax credit, I looked at about a dozen policies that had better coverage and were much cheaper than my do-nothing choice. I picked three for a more detailed examination and verified that my current doctor accepts these plans. Quality of choices rates an A.

* Twice I had a question so I utilized the "Live Chat" option available on every screen. It took less than 30 seconds each time to connect. The agents answered one of my questions and directed me to an 800 number for the second. Live Chat rates a B- for helpfulness..

* I selected the policy I wanted and completed the enrollment process which took another 90 minutes. Enrollment rates a B.

* Bingo! I was enrolled in a new health insurance policy that should start January 1st. End result rates an B-.  It would be an A if the software wasn't such garbage.

Here is the punch line: the company that will be insuring me is the same company that I have now and the same company that tried to sell me a "comparable" plan for almost $200 a month more. Obviously, they are hoping folks don't spend the time to discover that the government marketplace may produce a much better choice.

As an update, when I tried to help Betty with her application and choices a few days after my successful attempt the web site was either down, frozen, or wouldn't accept her choices. At this point her application is mostly done but we will either have to wait for several weeks for the web site to get fixed, or use the 800 number which I imagine must have its own set of problems.

Finally, I have confirmation from the government that I have enrolled in a particular policy but I have yet to receive information regarding payments and confirmation from the actual insurance company. I understand the data sent to these companies by the government is sometimes garbled or screwy so I may be celebrating a bit too soon. I will contact the company directly if I have not heard from them in another week.

Based on the figures I have been able to collect I estimate Betty will save at least $130 a month for superior coverage.

Like all legal documents you are familiar with , I will state that your results may vary and my success is no indicator of what you may encounter. But, for me the ACA (or Obamacare for those who prefer the generic name) eventually worked and will save me several hundred dollars a month while improving my coverage.


UPDATE: I have received my correct paperwork for my new policy. It arrived within one week of my on-line enrollment.

48 comments:

  1. Very informative! Thanks for the detailed account of your experience. When you become eligible for medicare, what will happen with your policy? I know that folks on Medicare are not eligible for the AHA. Will you look for a supplemental policy that will cover the 20% that medicare does not? My mother has AARP as her supplemental policy. It's not very expensive, and it literally covers all of the balance of the 20% that medicare does not cover.

    My husband and I are not effected by the AHA, as we have affordable health insurance through our past employers. But it will effect a number of people that we know. I'm grateful that AHA provides reasonable options for them. However it is discouraging to hear about the glitches in the software. And, I'm concerned for people who may not be as tech savy and really struggle with completing the process on line.

    Someday, people will look back on AHA the same way they look at social security and medicare. A safety net that provides what should be a basic right for every citizen: affordable health care.

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    1. When I qualify for Medicare I will cancel the policy purchased through the marketplace. And, yes, I will purchase a supplemental policy to go along with Medicare.

      Social Security had every bit as much distrust and misinformation when it started. With everyone who worked forced to contribute part of their wages it was actually more intrusive in daily life. But, today it is an essential part of our social fabric. If the ACA is allowed to develop I predict the same path.

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    2. Interesting. So ACA cannot be used as your medicare supplemental? Not that it matters for me as my group will continue but I guess I learned a new thing!!

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    3. That's correct, Barb. The policies that are purchased through the marketplace end when you go on Medicare. I will likely purchase a supplemental policy through AARP since it gets excellent reviews.

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  2. That's good to hear, Bob! it always pays to do your homework. We are not affected by the AHA because we will have employer associated healthcare until we go onto Medicare when my husband retires next February. Just out of curiosity about all the hoopla, he went online and checked out healthcare.gov and had no real difficulty navigating around it.

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    1. There is no dispute that the software is a mess. How I got through the process I don't know. But, it will get fixed and it will save many people money if they just put in the effort to check it out for themselves.

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  3. Bob, thanks for your unbiased coverage. I was an IT engineer who developed this type of software for a team of about 1000 engineers. The software glitches are inexcusable. I suspect that multiple companies were given pieces of the job with little or no over-sight. I didn't watch any of the hearings yesterday but I imagine there was a big blame game going on among them. I found that rather typical in that part of the country.

    Remember that it is still more than two months away before your coverage goes into affect so don't get too antsy just yet. I recently switched my phone and corresponding DSL connection over to VOIP and have yet to get what the costs will be! I just know they are significantly less for much better service. Government is not the only one to be slow, even with working software :)

    By the way it is ACA (Affordable Care Act)... Have a good one.

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    1. I fixed the typo...it is the ACA. I have read that 55 different companies were involved. That is a recipe for disaster.

      If I don't hear from the company my mid-November I will contact them directly. I don't want to pay $200 a month more than I have to!

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    2. The reason for the $200 difference is pretty simple. Both calculations are based upon populations. The one outside of the exchange is based upon one population set (pretty much the plans current population with some expected changes). The one with the exchange is based upon the projected population through the exchange. There will be substantial difference between the two. For example the number of young healthy members will be higher through the exchange. High income, young healthy individuals tend to get insurance at work not through individual policies, so you can generally remove them from both populations. Low income, young will be in the exchange population because of the government tax credits. Now this is offset to some degree by picking up some pre-existing conditions and some not so healthy, but the big cost driver is the number of healthy indiivduals primarily young that did not previously purchase insurance.

      There are also differences in that while both offer similar services, there may be differences in the provider choices. Many, not all, but many of the policies offered through the exchanges have a smaller networks of physicians and hospitals.

      The end result is different actuarial models and cost structures between the policy in the exchange and the one outside of it.

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  4. Now that you've done this, do you think that average people with moderate or low tech saavy will be able to understand and get through all of this choice and application process? It sounds daunting to me. I guess that a phone option is possible but that can be confusing too. Do you know if there is any kind of "printed" material for applying available? I suppose it might depend on your state. The only other choice would be to pay a broker I guess. Let's hope they update this lousy software asap!

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    1. When it works it seems rather straight forward. The questions are not complicated and the wording is in a large type size so it is easy to read.

      The part that might seem overwhelming are the number of choices. I suggest deciding ahead of time which of the four levels of coverage you are interested in. The web site has a section that allows you to do all this investigation before even starting the application process.

      When you finally get to the enrollment section the coverage choices are arranged by price from lowest to highest. I started at the cheapest and moved up until I found the type of coverage I wanted for a price I felt comfortable with. I made sure my present doctor was part of the plan and then enrolled.

      The phone option is available as well as "navigators," or people in your area who will help you with the application process for free. You can find them on the web site.

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    2. I'm not bob but I am not tech savvy in the truest sense (I do things online, but Im the girl that ten years ago asked her husband where the "any" key was-as in press any key).. although my son is not yet twenty six I went online to compare what he could get today to what he gets and the costs on my insurance plan. While I did not follow through to the end, finding the amount of subsidy credit as well as the costs was an easy thing to understand.

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  5. I Have several friends with the same outcome. I am wondering how m y of those young healthy males who need to balance the equation will slug through.
    Universal health care is the only way to make this really work! Hoping this is aThe first step. I am pretty sure if the next President is a democrat- that step will be taken.

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    1. The uproar over this law is the natural human reaction to change. So much of what I read is based on misinformation, fear, or the unwillingness to bear a bit more of the burden so less privileged people can have some medical help.

      As a society are we really willing to tell people who can't afford health insurance the way it has been sold until now, that their situation is there own fault and if they get sick that is their problem? I certainly hope not.

      Is the ACA without fault? Of course not. But, I am willing to go through some growing pains so those less fortunate than me can get basic wellness and illness coverage for themselves and their children.

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  6. Good to know! It's a shame about all the glitches in the software, but not unexpected. Anything this big is going to be a process once people start logging on. I'm anxious to get the #'s on how many of those who have slammed this program are going to be on it! ;)
    b

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    1. Medicare caused the same uproar in 1965. If you work you are forced to participate through taxes. But, I doubt any sane 65+ person in this country would want to be without it (or one of the private alternatives). It is socialized medicine on a grand scale and working to hold down costs and keep people alive and kicking.

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    2. As far as the numbers go when the insurance you were happy with is no longer available due to the law you really don't have much choice.

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  7. Thank you for taking time to document your experience & share an overall positive outlook on using the ACA website. It's so refreshing after all the demonizing about Obamacare & the website troubles we've been hearing. As a soon-to-be retired federal employee, I will not need an ACA plan prior to medicare, but I firmly believe it's a huge step in the right direction for our people. Also, although I'm not a programmer, I know enough about it to realize that the software problems are not unusual & they're making mountains out of molehills by comparison. Interesting that I've not heard anywhere near the outcry about the gigantic failures of the govt's efforts to redesign & automate the federal retirement processing system. Millions of dollars were spent over many years in multiple efforts and it's still not functioning right. Many new retirees wait months to a year to receive their full retirement benefits. No lie. The lopsided attention given to the troubles of first version of the ACA software is nauseating....

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    1. I believe the violent reaction is more a political one more than program-specific.

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  8. Bob, while I believe you had a good experience financially with the ACA, here is the other side of the equation. This is not anecdotal evidence, either - it is my brother's situation. Here is what he sent me yesterday:

    "Rec'd my healthscare insurance update from Cigna (used to have United Healthcare which I liked the best but had to go with Cigna) and the opening line is "In compliance with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) - also called healthcare reform..." and it basically is giving me the same plan as last year except for 2 interesting points - individual deductibles are going to $2000 and family to $4000 when it was $450 individual and $1000 family deductible this past year. And that's the BEST plan to choose from. The max out of pocket for family was $2500 this past year and will go to $7000 next year. Best part - premiums go UP 15% for this terrible change in coverage."

    There will be those that benefit from obamaCare and those that suffer because of it. I feel both sides of the story need to be aired.

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    1. Absolutely, Chuck. And, as you note in this post, my insurance company sent me the same letter. My rates are scheduled to go up 18% with weaker coverage, which is why I made my way to the web site.

      There is no argument that there will be those who have to pay more. But, don't overlook that the new law requires free colonoscopies (usually $1,000-$1,200), free prostate screenings, free mammograms and pap smears and free wellness exams. One must factor in what extra coverage is provided before assuming the increased cost is all wasted.

      That said, there are millions who will pay more. Is that fair? There are millions who pay more in income tax, have more Social Security taxes withheld, and pay higher property taxes. I pay much higher property taxes for school districts that get an override every year. I have no children in school but must pay anyway. Is that fair?

      Thanks for your comment, Chuck. My experience applies only to me. "Your mileage may differ" applies to this law as well.

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  9. Thank you so much doing this and posting info on your experience! There’s so much fear, vitriol and misinformation out there it’s great to hear firsthand from an objective person. Thank you! I enjoy your blog and have learned so much from reading about all your and your wife’s experiences. I wish your books were available in hard copy. Thanks again.

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    1. You are quite welcome, Terre. I wanted to do this myself so I could speak from first hand experience. I know there will be plenty of people who end up paying more. But, after my forays into this process I know there will be millions who are going to save and get better coverage.

      The ACA has many hurdles to overcome and has shortcomings that must be fixed. But, it is vital to give it a chance before knowing what needs repair, what needs to be added, and what should be discarded.

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  10. I can add my anecdotal experience, too. We were paying $753/month for insurance for an adult relative and two children. The plan equated to a silver plan. Without any supplement at all, I found two choices of silver plans from the same company and many other choices from others, with the highest cost of the two $461. Even the gold plans cost considerably less than we had been paying. Did I ask this relative to sign up right away? No, because, despite all the hoopla we've also been hearing about how small companies will be downsizing because they don't want to pay healthcare costs for all their employees, a small company was adding employees and hired the husband of the relative for whom we had been paying those insurance costs. (There was a valid reason having to do with the disability of one of the involved people: this was not the case of a lazy relative bumming off us.) Now the entire family, including the young male husband who has never had insurance during his adult life, has insurance through that company. One problem turns up in our state, however. Our governor and state legislature elected not to participate in the expanded Medicaid/Medicare program. Now many truly indigent who were intended to be covered by that program will not be able to get the subsidy under ACA in our state, either.

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    1. Thanks, Linda.

      I just ask those who are upset with the law or are convinced they will be burdened with inflated costs take the time and effort to find out for yourself. Yes, you may be charged more, though don't forget all the free tests and lack of pre-existing condition clause that comes with the increased costs. People like my wife have so many pre-existing conditions the only way for them to get a better policy (or a policy at all) is the implementations of this law.

      Will everyone benefit personally? No. Capitalism doesn't work that way. Ask me if I like paying more income tax than CEO's of many corporations. No, I don't. But, I feel I get a fair return for what I pay. I can't worry about the CEO of Citibank or Home Depot. That does me no good at all.

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    2. I may not have been entirely clear in all my comments. (I'm accustomed to waiting a few hours to review and edit my writing, when it's easier to see the mistakes I've made.) I forgot to mention that the more expensive $753 we had been paying excluded a prior existing condition for the relative, and the new $461 one would not have done so. I also said "no supplement" when I meant "no subsidy." Even without the subsidy, the policy was much cheaper. Also, we didn't suggest our relative sign up right away and we pay the cheaper price because the husband's new insurance included insurance for all four members of the family.

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    3. Bob,

      just to be accurate I doubt you are paying more taxes than many CEO's. You might be paying a higher marginal rate, if and only if their income primarily almost exclusively from capital gains and you are paying taxes at a higher than a 15% tax rate. Which would mean that your income would not qualify you for tax credits under the healthcare law.

      The biggest question concerning the health care law is how many younger adults sign up. The current rates are set with the assumption that they will. While the law results in lower rates for those of us over 50, it results in substantially higher costs for those that are healthy and in their 20's and 30's (doubling in some cases atleast a 50% increase in most). That is where the price shock is occurring. If they do not sign up in large numbers then the economics fall apart and next years insurance rates will be much higher. In most cases the law benefits those that have pre-existing conditions and are older, by subsidizing those populations at the expense of the younger.

      In my case I was paying $305 per month, the cheapest I can find on the exchange in California in $569. This is primarily because I was self insuring for the first $4000 of my annual health care and such policies are not allowed under the new law. Even though the policy pays sooner, the max out of pocket is higher under the new policy that under my old policy.

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    4. You are right, RDC, it is the marginal rate. Through loopholes and other devices, I don't believe many of them are paying their fair share, based on their actual income regardless of the source.

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  11. This has nothing to do with the healthcare topic, but rather your new website design. To me, the new blue lettering in the "Favorite Blogs" section on the right-hand side is virtually unreadable. It just soaks right into the background. I haven't seen anyone else mention this, so maybe it's just my (fairly new, actually) computer, but just thought I'd throw it out there...

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    1. The color of each blog or post title changes from white to blue after you have clicked over to a particular blog so you know you have visited that site. But, I agree with your comment so now the click will stay as white after you come back.

      Let me know if that looks better.

      I hope that makes it easier.

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  12. The ACA was voted into law on March 23, 2010. It is a law – it started out with 2700 pages and is now up to 30,000 pages – the Supreme Court has ruled that it is a law that will be enforced – it will get more expensive but IT IS NOT GOING AWAY. So you need to understand it and work with it.

    I have looked at the part of the web-site that is for small businesses. I have not gone very far with it, but will be interested to talk to our brokers and compare the plans offered compared to the ones we have now – it may be that there will be something there that will save our company money and still give our employees good coverage – I hope that will be the case.

    Here is a web site that seems to offer the facts and deal with some of the issues in a clear way. I found it helpful: http://obamacarefacts.com/

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    1. Thanks so much, Pat. You are taking a logical and intelligent approach: see if ACA saves your company money. Compare those options to what your broker offers and pick what is best for your company.

      Thanks for the web site reference. I can't find who sponsors it, but the information is presented well. Of course, there will be arguments about some of the statements on the site. That is inevitable.

      But, for someone who wants a good overview of what all this means, you have found an excellent resource. Read it, get your questions answered, and then make up your mind.

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  13. Some observations based on my personal experiences .....

    1. Nearly all health insurance premiums (true cost of employer) have been steadily and substantially increasing for quite some time. Material annual increases well before the ACA were common. As a partner in my firm I paid the true cost full premium for our family for nearly 25 years. For myself and my spouse with a high deductible plan the premium now exceeds $12k per year. Before that family coverage was of course higher.

    2. I strongly suspect most people who are having individual plan premium increases are seeing them as a result of the general increasing premiums and the fact that the coverage now may be stronger (deductibles and out of pockets may be higher, but overall coverage is more expansive). Many people who had abnormally low premiums likely had poor coverage but didn't know it because they never had a substantial medical event.

    3. This past year I transitioned to part time status, and will no longer be eligible for the firm group plan upon the expiration of COBRA. The ACA provides my wife and I the opportunity for good health insurance coverage at rates that are substantially below the rates we were paying for the full premium costs through my firm. Most importantly in our situation, we are able to obtain coverage (under the current system we would not have been insurable through individual plans due to pre-existing conditions, but thanks to ACA we can now obtain coverage). Absent ACA we may not have made the lifestyle choice we made as we may have opted to have me continue full time just for the group insurance coverage.

    I'm aware that there are a wide variety of outcomes in individual circumstances. However, to date ours has been quite positive.

    Best to you and to everyone else reading for good health and positive experiences with their own health insurance situation.

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    1. You make an important point.: in many cases very low premiums were for limited policies that provided basic catastrophic coverage. The new law mandates much stronger protections, attempts to keep people from using the emergency room for basic health care (which costs tax payers a fortune each year), provides for several important free medical tests per year, and stops companies from using a pre-existing condition, which everyone over the age of 40 likely has, to deny coverage.

      I have been on the individual market for nearly 35 years. In the last decade my costs have averaged a 15% increase every single year. The present system is bankrupting me and I don't have any chronic conditions or illnesses. Nor do I have any choices. No new company would accept me since I have allergies and have been treated for a pre-ulcer (6 years ago). The new law gives me a choice and a way out of a path that would have eventually meant my dropping health insurance. It already consumes 30% of my yearly income. There aren't too many more things I could cut to pay a 15% increase year after year.

      Thanks, Rick, for your thoughts.

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  14. Wow! Thanks so much for changing the lettering. So much better for me. I understood the idea that the topic changed to blue once I'd read it, but I couldn't read the blog name and I don't read all of those blogs. The changing color idea is a good one, actually. Maybe have the title of the daily post change to blue after reading. That way, if you see a title you can't make out, it's okay; you know you've already read it! :-)

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    1. Glad I could so easily solve the problem!

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  15. I will add my two cents as well. We have been paying $760 per month for an extremely high deductible plan for my husband, and a high deductible state sponsered high risk pool insurance plan for me (only thing I could get because I have sleep apnea - used to be an automatic rejection in 48 states!) I have been on our Oregon site, and decided on the lowest price Bronze plan with the company that my husband's plan is currently with. We do qualify for the credit, but even without it, we would have better coverage for less money than we are currently paying. With the credit, we are looking at only $101 per month! It is a $5,000 deductible policy (less than we have had) but the big difference for us is the much lower total out of pocket expense. Since we don't go to the doctor much (we are pretty healthy) we kept the high deductible policy. The silver plan makes sense for someone who goes to the doctor a lot, but all plans have the same total out of pocket ($6,350 per peson). Getting the silver plan just quaranteed we would pay about $2500 more per year, and it still has a $3000 deductible.

    Without the ACA, we would have been uninsured for many years. (I am 60 and my husband 59). We almost went without last year, but were able to get the high deductible policy for my husband which lowered our monthly expense to $760 from $1100 per month. If the ACA had been repealed, we would have dropped coverage. I am SO THANKFUL for the ACA!

    Oregon has its own website, and although you can get a lot of information, you still can't enroll onlline. They are working on it and it is supposed to be OK soon. In the meantime, there are agents that are authorized to sign you up - no cost to you. I may do that so it is done. My brother sells medical insurance in CA, and is an authorized agent. He and everyone in his office is working 12 to 16 hrs a day trying to stay up with the demand!

    Oh, and one other thing about young people paying more - that is true if, as a couple they make more than $62,040 per year and don't have insurance through their employer. If they make less, they qualify for the credits! Also, for adults under age 30, they can opt for a catastrophic policy only - and not have to pay a penalty.

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    1. Excellent information, Donnine. Thanks for the feedback regarding Oregon, a state that is running its own exchange. Here in Arizona the state opted for the Federal Government to run the exchange, but amazingly did agree to increased Medicaid opportunities. State legislators are trying to repeal that so we will see whether a bunch of really poor folks are cut adrift.

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    2. Does anyone have any experience yet with any of the state run exchanges? Is the web site working? Are there enough choices for insurance?

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    3. This information I posted above was from the State of Colorado, not going through a broker and an exchange. I would say that they had many alteratives

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    4. one last thing I would throw into the mix. It would seem that at the State level (including Arizona I understand), governors are much more savvy about the ACA and how it can help them (by getting federal money and insuring more citizens). I see this as encouraging on many levels.

      That said, I agree that the difficulty is getting gets my son's age to jump in. He has my help, but a kid without parental help who has never had his own insurance to begin with could find the process frightening. I suspect that these are the folks who really need help navigating the law.

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    5. Quite surprisingly, Arizona's Republican governor actually pushed back against the Republican legislators and implemented increased Medicaid coverage, using Federal money. The state did pass on running its own exchange which is probably a good thing considering how many leaders seem to hate the ACA.

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  16. I can see how this can be of great benefit to the older and unhealthy young--- but I would love to hear the experience of the "kids" who are healthy between 27- 40. I know my sister is dropping all the insurance for her employees and then giving them a higher wage to cover the new insurance. It will be interesting to see how many do that. Universal health care---while giving insurance companies a slice in the middle. Let's get rid of those insurance companies :)

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    1. I gather that the rates in future years and probably the entire viability of this law will depend on healthy younger people signing up. The "fine" for not doing so is so low many will probably choose to pay the penalty instead of the insurance costs. With pre-existing conditions not a factor someone could wait until he becomes sick or has an illness and then sign up. That could be a fatal flaw.

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    2. Janette and Bob, the anecdotal evidence I provided earlier about the extended family members for whom we were paying insurance costs involved a 33-year-old adult and two dependent children. Their insurance options under ACA were much cheaper than the $753 we were paying on their behalf, even without any possible subsidies figured in, and would have no longer exempted treatment for a pre-existing condition the adult has. Of course, I can not know for sure if the previously uninsured 33-year-old husband of that extended family member would have bought insurance, too, if his new employer hadn't offered insurance coverage for him and his family, but I know that he had been getting quotes from brokers for the entire family, including him, ahead of mandated coverage. Again, that doesn't speak to the entire population of people in this age group and is just one bit of anecdotal information.

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  17. Thanks for this. It was enlightening. I am soon to be 64. I have no health insurance since I retired. My husband already has Medicare. I'm blessed to be pretty healthy for my age. I don't plan to enroll at all. I have opted to pay the fine, it is less expensive for me since I am already on Social Security. I will enroll in Medicare in late 2014, so I think I'm ok. I am also blessed to live in the country where we have a garden, chickens, and have enough sons and grandsons to provide us with venison every hunt season. ( Don't buy beef, don't eat pork.) So I'm good to go. Again thanks for this article, I enjoy following your posts, they are informative and entertaining as well.

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    1. The fine the first year is so small it is silly. I think it is $95 which isn't enough to get someone to buy insurance. If you turn 65 next year and go on Medicare you shouldn't even have to worry about that since the fine won't be assessed until your 2014 taxes that are filed in 2015.

      I'm glad you enjoy the posts and find them them helpful.

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