Skip to comments.New challenge for Obamacare: Enrollees donít understand their insurance plans
Posted on 07/16/2014 2:18:05 PM PDT by Second Amendment First
Nine months after Americans began signing up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, a challenging new phase is emerging as confused enrollees clamor for help in understanding their coverage.
Nonprofits across the country are being swamped by consumers with questions. Many are low income, have never had insurance and have little knowledge of the health-care system. The rampant confusion poses a potential hurdle for the success of the health law: If many Americans dont understand health insurance, that could hurt their ability to use their benefits or to keep their coverage altogether.
Community organizations are scrambling to keep up with the larger-than-anticipated demand but are stretched thin. A federal program to help consumers has also run out of money.
We are hearing this in probably every state that we work in, said Christine Barber, a senior policy analyst with Community Catalyst, a Boston-based advocacy organization that works with community groups in more than 40 states. Okay, I have my card, what do I do now?
Health insurance, with its jargon and complicated fee structure, has long been confusing for many consumers, but experts say the literacy gap poses an especially big problem now. Before the opening of the marketplaces, people buying coverage on their own tended to be individuals with higher incomes and more familiarity with how insurance works.
So what youve got is an insurance industry that did not do a good job in gearing up for a population that has never had health insurance before, an Obama administration that did a horrible job on the back-end, resulting in a flood of calls to insurer call centers, and a population that is low-income and is not health-insurance literate.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Julio Herrera, 63, a construction worker, bought what he thought would be the most affordable plan when he enrolled through Marylands new insurance exchange this spring.
But he doesnt understand why he is getting charged for hospital bills when he already pays the insurance company every month. And he did not grasp this thing a deductible that was $4,000.
If there is one concept that people dont understand, its the deductible,
Oh, they understand it all right. Obama’s paying for it out of his stash.
Low information voters not understanding a low information law passed by low information members of Congress and written by low information bureaucrats.
What could possibly go wrong?
“Dee Ductible....” There’s a stripper name, for ya..
he’s 63 and doesn’t understand deductible???? What, he’s never insured anything in his life?
You can’t fix stupid. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink it.
These morons are finally figuring out it’s not free! bahahahaha!!
I wouldn't expect the average man-in-the-street to automatically understand concepts like deductible, copay, co-insurance, MOOP, or capitation, among others.
Some of the newer variations like cost-sharing subsidies in certain silver plans take a moment to sink in even among the better read of the rest of us.
They'll also be vulnerable when the insurance companies start denying claims. For all of these reasons, clinic-style medicine would be much better for a lot of the formerly uninsured.
But you can make the horse drink the Kool-Aid - and make him think it was his idea.
Stupid not only can’t be fixed, it is the one crime for which the Universe always extracts punishment....
“But he said he doesnt understand why he has to pay premiums when he is on vacation”
Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up..
I can offer some advice.
1. Look up the definition of “deductible”.
2. Buy a pair of glasses in order to facilitate the reading of the fine print.
3. Erase the phone numbers of all your doctors. You won’t be needing those anymore.
4. Buy a new car. You may be driving to the other end of the state for your doctors appointments.
5. Buy a real high quality calendar. Sometimes it’s hard to remember doctor appointments that are far in the future.
6. Get a second job. The rates will be going up every year. Forever.
I would expect the average man on the street to understand deductible and co pay. Maybe not all the other, but yes, if you call yourself a man, there are some basics one should have.
If you’re a boy on the other hand ..
The good news is that you now have a brand new Obamacare policy and it only cost 2X what an insurance policy would have cost you before Obamacare.
The bad news is that no doctors or hospitals will accept your Obamacare policy.
Would you like a free Obama phone?
Many are paying $100 a month for policies with $12,000 deductibles: no they don’t understand, but they think the administration is “on their side”.
It can be tempting to laugh at the ignorance of the “little people”, but in the words of the late Ann Willis Richards, D-TX, talking about the first and second Bushes, they “cain’t he’p it.”
Then she sustained an injury and had to go for rehab. One night she called me all upset. The physical therapy practice billed her $1200. Seems she didn't realize that wonderful benefit from her idol king included a $1500 deductible.
For days afterwards my tongue was sore from biting it. It was all I could do to prevent myself from saying, I told you so.
Most people that have had health insurance at one time or another would understand those concepts. What they may not understand is Obamacare. I was talking today to a 60 year old lady that was laid off a couple months ago from her job. I brought up the subject about what she going to do about health care. She said the Cobra coverage was way too expensive. I didn't want to pry too much into her affairs, but I got the sense she had no clue about the implications of Obamacare or even what kind death care she was eligible for....
They still don’t have health insurance, they have Medicaid and a good number of them are not only illiterate, they don’t speak English and they don’t have citizenship.
It’s a big problem. Many of these illiterate, non English speak in insures gained their coverage by joining one branch or another of the SEIU.
Well, there’s one thing you can count on, guaranteed, and that is, they’ll blame it all on the EEEVIL insurance companies.
At least she puts out. Everybody is going to get some.
Full benefit? Have you looked at those policies? They amount to high deductible major medical with free physicals and birth control. Ninety percent of the newly insured won’t receive any significant benefit from them.
The benefits they do receive will be geared to "what's covered". When I was hospitalized with a lung situation five years ago, it was a constant battle with "my" medical team. It was appalling how they'd provide services I neither wanted nor needed because my coverage allowed it. I can't imagine those unsophisticated about their situation getting the care they need.
The Gibsmedats aren't used to that sort of unfair treatment. Usually they just show up, get treated, and leave without having to pay a cent - or even give their correct names.
Just imagine how upset they would be if they had to file income tax returns and send the IRS a check instead of getting a free one back!
Your post is spot on. Most people don’t understand deductibles and co-pay. My company is self insured and I am pretty amazed at the number of people who pop a cork about paying a deductible and out of pocket charges....even though we have a low monthly premium, low deductible and oop. And good coverage. This insurance is CRAPPY they will tell me. Someday, I’m gonna have to tell these folks to hit the market place and see how crappy the insurance our very generous employer is providing.
I read an article (and received notices at work) that there is legislation in place that will allow insurance companies and OCare to cap what they will pay on various procedures. And if a provider is chosen that exceeds the benefit amount...it won’t apply to the out of pocket or deductible. That sure isn’t going to muddy the waters will it?
Essentially what the (relatively) poor are paying for is protection from a life event that is probably the most unlikely one of a whole series of events that could wipe them out. And it’s also one where the “safety net” provides considerable protection through Medicaid and similar government programs. The real beneficiaries in those instances of catastrophic illness visiting the poor are going to be the hospitals that are providing uncompensated care and the taxpayers who are subsidizing that care.
And the fact is that the deductible and the co-pay would probably still be enough to wipe them out, so they’re not really well protected anyway.
Before Obamacare, people like this would simply go to the Emergency Room any time they needed healthcare, but would not pay the bill. Now that we have Obamacare, these same people go to the Emergency Room any time they need healthcare, but don't pay the bill.