The Health Insurance Panic Is Real: Nobody Has A Sound Solution To Lower Premiums - And That Is A Major Issue
March 20, 2023
Young or old – rich or poor – if you haven’t paid attention to healthcare, you better start now! If you can remember as far back as 2012, when President Obama was checking in on his last term in office – and while he was finishing the plans for Obamacare – the 2016 election was going to be all about who had the best plan for the spiraling costs of health care premiums and co-pays.
“Time is here,” Hollywood resident Michael Garcia said. “All those doomsday scenarios that were painted by both parties are now here and it affect's everyone's pocket.”
As President Trump came in with all his bells and whistles – many bought into the fact that he was getting rid of Obamacare, but what tons of supporters never asked is while they were getting rid of one plan, what affordable insurance coverage would we see? That has been answered, and with escalating premiums and pre-existing conditions coming back into play, it is NOT what anyone had in mind.
For North Miami Beach resident Richard Cohen, the past few years have been such a financial burden, getting older and, close to getting the country’s dwindling Medicare plan. Cohen, who works full-time and his wife, who barely works a part-time job, have been faced with paying over $2,000.00 per month for health insurance premiums – and that does not include the out-of-pocket co-pays on medication, blood work and offices visits.
“I really do not know what to do,” he said, showing plenty of concern on his face. “I don’t make that much money – with all the normal bills I pay, but for some reason, when we were looking for coverage, this was really the best we could do – even with a deductible that was very high. It is so mind boggling that it keeps me up at night.”
Insurance does indeed control all of our lives – and for those who are younger and may not have to use medication or go to the doctor right now, it is up to you to start the fight – because by the time you reach the age where you will be dependent on doctors, home care and medicines, there may not be a choice.
“Whether people want to admit it or not, we do not have a plan in this country,” Cohen pointed out. “And, listening to someone who ran to be the Governor of Florida is not going to change that – no matter what they promise you. This is 100 percent about the insurance companies holding everyone hostage and our government continues to dance around a life-altering decision.”
There are enough people in south Florida who are certainly in the same insurance boat and they simply do not want to sink. But to offer lower cost premiums and overall care will have to come with many concessions – from every side of healthcare.
“If anyone is going to save or see premiums drop, it only makes sense that it has to come from somewhere,” Ginger Morales of Hallandale Beach said. “If healthcare on the overall is to be affordable then doctors, drug companies and those in the medical field will have to drop their fees – and the insurance companies have to follow. If that doesn’t happen, nobody will have a choice. We are in trouble - because soon a majority will not be able to afford any coverage.”
MEDICAL COST TRENDS DO NOT LIE
Large fluctuations in medical cost trends have, for now, disappeared, but healthcare continues to represent a large share of the US economy and a large share of total employee compensation. A consistent growth rate between 5.5 percent and 7 percent is still unsustainably high. Responding to increased consumer pressure, employers and health plans are improving convenience by giving consumers more ways to get care. The long-term goal is to decrease spending, but in the short term, more access points can increase utilization.
No matter where you stand on the healthcare issue, and most are demanding lower premiums and better overall coverage - there is really nothing on the table that would make life easier for everyone - and that is indeed very alarming.