Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Covered California individual health care exchange (Obama Care)

San Jose Mercury News/Politics and Government/Tracy Seipel, 9/30/13. "Obamacare and insurance exchange: 10 essential things to know." 

Open enrollment from today, 10/1/13
"We've put together a Top 10 list of things you should know about the new health care reform law. Use it as a primer. And check back for more stories to help you sort it all out.  ....  5) There's no need to rush to sign up. In fact, it's probably not a good idea. You'll have until Dec. 15 to buy health insurance through the exchange if you want the coverage to start on Jan. 1, when the new Obamacare policies will take effect. That gives everyone 21/2 months to study their options carefully, either on their own or with the help of certified enrollment counselors and certified insurance agents in your area. Enrollment will continue until March 31.  The next open-enrollment period begins in October 2014 for coverage in 2015."   Read article.

Then take a look at the health care exchange www.coveredca.com, look for "Shop-and compare".  In our area, the Preferred Provider (PPO) carriers are Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield of CA, and Health Net.  The Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) insurance carriers are Kaiser Permanente, and Chinese Community Health Plan (CCHP).  

Related -  89.3 KPCC Southern California Public Radio/Stephanie O'Neill, "Take Two", 10/1/13.   Q: What should we be aware of?  A: Narrow Networks. Many of the companies will provide less-costly plans by working deals with doctors and hospitals who agree to get paid much lower rates than they now get. That creates more narrow provider networks which may not include your doctor or hospital. The Covered California website allows you to search for your doctor when considering your plan. 

Related Video - understanding of Obama Care for DummiesUnworthy.com, 6:53 minutes, "The Youtoons get ready for Obamacare. Health insurance changes coming your way under The Affordable Care Act",  from Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

Note:  Photograph from  Tactical (health administration) blog.

Posted by Kathy Meeh


Kathy Meeh said...

Observed California downside to regular individual/family health care insurance plans: cost has gone way up (first look about 42%). One reason for the cost increase would be guaranteed plan issue regardless of health condition.

By comparison, small group plans (up to 50 employees) have increased in cost about 7%, not higher cost than the prior year.

Small group plans are insurance carrier pool (all insured), regional experience trend (claims, expected claims) cost rated by the health insurance carrier. Larger insured groups (50+) are more subject to additional cost factors (+ or -) of their insured employer/organization pooled (all employees) experience. The calculation is generally year-to-year from the plan renewal date.

Anonymous said...

So far according to the news the Obamacare has been a cluster F*ck. Can not get on the websites to sign up. A fine if you don't. Typical crap from the politico's and the medical and pharmacutical industry.

Anonymous said...

If websites crash, it's the failure of the technology, not Obamacare. There's overwhelming demand.

"On the first day of a six-month open-enrollment period, the Covered California site received 5 million hits by 3 p.m., averaging 5,000 hits per minute and peaking at 16,000 hits per minute.

"As of 3 p.m., the two Covered California call centers received 17,000 phone calls -- 13,000 more than anticipated.

"At 8:46 a.m., Covered California tweeted that it had enrolled its first person -- even though people have until Dec. 15 to sign up for coverage that begins next year."


Anonymous said...

You have 6 months to enroll if you don't already have insurance. I'm pretty sure there will be plenty of opportunity after the first day for web sites and phones to work so nobody will have to worry about a penalty unless they choose not to have insurance.

Hutch said...

Still remains to be seen if this thing actually lowers premiums and makes them affordable for people and businesses. I hope so. This is far from universal health care though.

Anonymous said...

I'm not at all concerned if people who already have insurance have their premiums lowered or raised. What's important is that people who don't have any insurance and can't get it are now guaranteed that they can have it. And the cost will depend on their income. If they can afford it, they will pay more. But if they can't afford it, they won't pay as much as those who can and they will still be able to get health insurance even if they have a pre-existing condition.

Anonymous said...

These large scale social changes start with admirable, humanitarian goals nearly all can embrace, but they never fail to bring out the worst in us as a country. The Civil Rights Movement, WPA, New Deal, Labor Movement, OSHA, Social Security, Marshall Plan, United Nations...bet they all had a bumpy ride. Hoping this doesn't work is pretty low when it can mean so much to people who need it, and, from the response, want it.

Anonymous said...

Too many people falling between the cracks in this country.

Anonymous said...

Obama had the votes for the public option which would have been universal health care but Obama killed it play nice with the republicans. We all see how well that turned out.


Did you know Henry Kaiser went to Washington DC and gave the congress and house talks on his Kaiser type HMO for all as national universal health care. The Medical Lobby tossed him out of Washington DC on the next train.