Another "open enrollment" season for Obamacare has arrived, as health insurance rates go even higher and the program is collapsing.
Costs are spiraling out of control because of expensive government mandates. For example, a 60-year-old woman must pay for maternity coverage. "Preventive medicine" freebies take money away from needed care. And, of course, healthy younger people aren't buying Obamacare because they know that they are being ripped off, leaving a sicker, older and much more expensive population to be covered by the premiums.
The Democrats who shoved it down our throats refuse to lift a finger to fix it, and the Republicans can't come together to fix it. This gridlock is playing into the hands of those who want to put the government in full control of your health insurance, putting you in line for the same fine treatment our veterans have come to expect from the VA.
Whichever group prevails, it is likely to be a rough ride:
- IRS tax penalties for not being insured will remain in place for 2017 and possibly 2018. Penalty amounts are based on income and can be substantial.
- People who underestimated their income to qualify for the government insurance subsidy are being surprised by tax bills to repay excess benefits, and in some cases forfeiture of the subsidiary going forward. Don't drag your feet responding to IRS notices, and get help if you need it.
- If the tax penalty would not be large, get a "short term" plan which doesn't have the unnecessary Obamacare coverage. You'll save hundreds or maybe thousands of dollars.
- Go for a high-deductible plan with drug benefits. That'll get you in the hospital and let you afford the treatments.
- Expect employer-sponsored plans to take more and more of your money. Start saving now if you can.
- Yes, old people are already being denied lifesaving treatments. Save up some cash so you can be treated by an out of the system doctor.
- Find a doctor out of the U.S. as a last resort. They are cheaper than and often just as good as U.S. doctors.
- The "sticker price" charged by medical service provides, especially hospitals, is far above what they expect to receive, and "sticker price "debts are often written off. Don't be afraid to seek medical help if you need it.
- Find an insurance broker to help guide you through the morass.
- Yes, you should have a health insurance policy for your family. You can find something affordable if you look for it.
- No, you can't trust the government with your family's health. Take control, and you will not be sorry.
About all, remember that the Lord is your healer (Ps. 103: 3). Knowing Him is the best insurance policy you have.
Ron Allen is a Christian businessman, CPA and author who serves in local, national and international ministries, spreading a message of reconciliation to God, to men and between believers. He is founder of the International Star Bible Society, telling how the heavens declare the glory of God; the Emancipation Network, which helps people escape from financial bondage; and co-founder with his wife, Pat, of Corporate Prayer Resources, dedicated to helping intercessors.
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