Meet The Family That Just Spent Half Its Annual Income Paying For Obamacare

Tyler Durden’s pictureSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 11/15/2015

Not a week passes without some incremental revelation showing precisely what happens when Congress passes a bill just to see what’s in it.

Well, since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, also known as the Obamacare tax, we have watched in horror as shocker after shocker are revealed.

Some examples:

Now we can add one more thing that “was in it”: soaring deductibles, which give the fake impression of contained, low all-in costs… until one actually needs expensive medial help (and these days there is no other kind).

The latest expose against Obamacare comes not from its usual nemesis, but the hard-left NYT, suggesting that even the ideological supporters of Obama’s “crowning achievement” are losing faith. To wit:

Obama administration officials, urging people to sign up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, have trumpeted the low premiums available on the law’s new marketplaces.


But for many consumers, the sticker shock is coming not on the front end, when they purchase the plans, but on the back end when they get sick: sky-high deductibles that are leaving some newly insured feeling nearly as vulnerable as they were before they had coverage.


“The deductible, $3,000 a year, makes it impossible to actually go to the doctor,” said David R. Reines, 60, of Jefferson Township, N.J., a former hardware salesman with chronic knee pain. “We have insurance, but can’t afford to use it.”


In many states, more than half the plans offered for sale through HealthCare.gov, the federal online marketplace, have a deductible of $3,000 or more, a New York Times review has found. Those deductibles are causing concern among Democrats — and some Republican detractors of the health law, who once pushed high-deductible health plans in the belief that consumers would be more cost-conscious if they had more of a financial stake or skin in the game.


“We could not afford the deductible,” said Kevin Fanning, 59, who lives in North Texas, near Wichita Falls. “Basically I was paying for insurance I could not afford to use.” He dropped his policy.

In other words, Obamacare’s “affordable care” is affordable, as long as one doesn’t actually have to use it!

Here is the damage when one does:

  • In Miami, the median deductible, according to HealthCare.gov, is $5,000.
  • In Jackson, Miss., the comparable figure is $5,500.
  • In Chicago, the median deductible is $3,400.
  • In Phoenix, it is $4,000;
  • In Houston and Des Moines, $3,000.

Considering far more than half the US population has less than $1,000 in savings, there are quite literally tens of millions of people who are one ER visit away from the poor house. And they are unhappy. But at least the liberal think tanks have words of advice:

To those worried about high out-of-pocket costs, Dave Chandra, a policy analyst at the liberal-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, has some advice: “Everyone should come back to the marketplace and shop. You may get a better deal.”

But you almost certainly won’t, because the whole structuring of Obamacare was to lower future costs at the expense of a surge in deductible payments, aka the oldest trick in the insurance book. And America fell for it.

So here is what happens when one does find out what is in the “affordable” care law, after it was passed.

Meet Mr. Fanning, from North Texas, who said he and his wife had a policy with a monthly premium of about $500 and an annual deductible of about $10,000 after taking account of financial assistance. Their income is about $32,000 a year.

The Fannings dropped the policy in July after he had a one-night hospital stay and she had tests for kidney problems, and the bills started to roll in.

And just like that a family of two spent half their annual income on insurance and deductibles courtesy of the “Affordable” care act.

It gets better:

Another consumer, Anne Cornwell of Chattanooga, Tenn., said she was excited when Congress passed the Affordable Care Act because she had been uninsured for several years. She is glad that she and her husband now have insurance, because he has had tonsil cancer, heart problems and kidney stones this year.


But with a $10,000 deductible, it has still not been easy.

Her conclusion: “When they said affordable, I thought they really meant affordable,” she said.

Nothing more to add.

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