Tuesday, April 2, 2013

ObamaCare is one the Way!

The Feds announced today the the website for group exchanges will be delayed until 2015.  In theory the government has stated that all exchanges for health insurance will be open October 1, 2014.  In Georgia and about two dozen other states the Feds are going to set up and run these exchanges.  What is supposed to happen is for any individual to go to this website, shop, find out if they can get help with payments for premiums and enroll.  Sounds easy, but the trouble may come in the details.  I have found in 36 years of selling insurance that many out there are not sure what they want in the way of coverage.  These sites are suppose to have "Navigators" to help assist shoppers in how to fill out the form to apply for coverage.  One friend told me today that the training for these folks will start in September.  This is going to be very interesting.

Things we do know:

All individual policies will be guarantee issue for anyone that wants a policy.  No pre-existing conditions.

There will be about ten things that have to be in every policy.  For example, maternity, even if you cannot have a child, you will have it in your new policy.

There are just a few major Federal departments involved, IRS, HHS, Labor Dept, just to name a few.

Penalities start out low and increase for those who do not buy or have insurance. 

There will be a lot of confusion on the part of the Feds, insurance companies, agents, and consumers.

Rates will be higher for younger folks and might be a little lower for older folks. 

No one knows for sure what rates will be like come October 1.

Insurance companies are trying to find out and pass on the best information to agents that is possible, but this is a real moving target.

The price of health insurance is going up, not down. You will be able to purchase insurance with no questions asked--if you can afford to pay the premiums.

Stay tuned, we are working to get answers as to how to get through this mess the government has created.

Remember, we do have to read it to know what the law says in the "Affordable Care Act."

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Health Insurance is Becoming More Expensive

It's sure not any secret to anyone who buys individual health insurance that rates continue to climb and benefits continue to drop.  As we have told clients for the last few years we are selling $5000 deductible plans for about the same price as $500 deductible plans six years ago.  The rapid rise in premiums are the result of Obamacare.  Less people in the pool of buyers.  Higher than average medical costs for drugs and hospital services.

Many people who are covered at work for the government or large companies are shocked at the premium costs.  One has to wonder where all of this will end.  I am not sure and neither is anyone else.  What we are seeing from an insurance agents standpoint is far less support from insurance companies to the agents and lower commissions.  There will be in the next five years a real shortage of agents that selling individual policies.  Why you might ask?  Rates go up 15 to 20 percent each year and with reduced commissions and the service (or lack of service from insurance companies) agents are chosing to sell other products.

I receive a call each day from a prospect who is very confused by the many options and insurance companies that still offer policies.  Just go to any site (mine is http://www.danmcbrayer.com/) and get a quote and look at all of the choices.  Agents are needed to help customers thru the maze of all of this.  Years ago (35 to be exact) it was much easier to buy health insurance.  No ppo's no hmos, usually you had a $250 deductible with doctor visits, drugs, and such going toward the deductible and they all paid 80/20 to say $5000, then 100%.  Policy max was $250,000....my have things changed.

I have no idea what the future holds for individual health insurance.  I know that the Obamas of the world want a single payor plan and who knows....one may be over the hill.  Until next time.  Thanks for reading!