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Old 11-01-2013, 02:57 PM  
Loneiguana Loneiguana is offline
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Another Obamacare horror story debunked

The vast majority of Horror Stories are being Dubunked.

This is just one example.

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Deborah Cavallaro is a hard-working real estate agent in the Westchester suburb of Los Angeles who has been featured prominently on a round of news shows lately, talking about how badly Obamacare is going to cost her when her existing plan gets canceled and she has to find a replacement.

She says she's angry at President Obama for having promised that people who like their health plans could keep them, when hers is getting canceled for not meeting Obamacare's standards.

"Please explain to me," she told Maria Bartiromo on CNBC Wednesday, "how my plan is a 'substandard' plan when ... I'd be paying more for the exchange plans than I am currently paying by a wide margin."

Bartiromo didn't take her up on her request. So I will.

The bottom line is that Cavallaro's assertion that "there's nothing affordable about the Affordable Care Act," as she put it Tuesday on NBC Channel 4, is the product of her own misunderstandings, abetted by a passel of uninformed and incurious news reporters.

I talked with Cavallaro, 60, after her CNBC appearance. Let's walk through what she told me.

Her current plan, from Anthem Blue Cross, is a catastrophic coverage plan for which she pays $293 a month as an individual policyholder. It requires her to pay a deductible of $5,000 a year and limits her out-of-pocket costs to $8,500 a year. Her plan also limits her to two doctor visits a year, for which she shoulders a copay of $40 each. After that, she pays the whole cost of subsequent visits.

This fits the very definition of a nonconforming plan under Obamacare. The deductible and out-of-pocket maximums are too high, the provisions for doctor visits too skimpy.

As for a replacement plan, she says she was quoted $478 a month by her insurance broker, but that's a lot more than she'll really be paying. Cavallaro told me she hasn't checked the website of Covered California, the state's health plan exchange, herself. I did so while we talked.

Here's what I found. I won't divulge her current income, which is personal, but this year it qualifies her for a hefty federal premium subsidy.

At her age, she's eligible for a good "silver" plan for $333 a month after the subsidy -- $40 a month more than she's paying now. But the plan is much better than her current plan -- the deductible is $2,000, not $5,000. The maximum out-of-pocket expense is $6,350, not $8,500. Her co-pays would be $45 for a primary care visit and $65 for a specialty visit -- but all visits would be covered, not just two.

Is that better than her current plan? Yes, by a mile.

If she wanted to pay less, Cavallaro could opt for lesser coverage in a "bronze" plan. She could buy one from the California exchange for as little as $194 a month. From Anthem, it's $256, or $444 a year less than she's paying now. That buys her a $5,000 deductible (the same as she's paying today) but the out-of-pocket limit is lower, $6,350. Office visits would be $60 for primary care and $70 for specialties, but again with no limit on the number of visits. Factor in the premium savings, and it's hard to deny that she's still ahead.

Cavallaro told me a couple of things that are worth considering. First, what she likes about her current plan is that she can go to any doctor of her choice and any hospital. That's not entirely true, because her current plan with Anthem does favor a network. Plainly, however, it's broad enough to serve her purposes. She's concerned that the new plans will offer smaller networks, which is probably true, though it's not necessarily true that the new networks will exclude her favorite doctors, hospitals or prescription formularies.

She also mentioned that her annual income fluctuates. It can be substantially lower, or substantially higher, than it is this year. What if next year she earns too much to qualify for the subsidy? Also a fair point -- at her current income, the subsidy is worth more than $200 a month to her. But that's not the same as saying that "there's nothing affordable about the Affordable Care Act," because at her current income, the act is vastly more affordable to her than what she's paying now.

When she told Channel 4 that "for the first time in my whole life, I will be without insurance," it's hard to understand what she was talking about. (Channel 4 didn't ask.) Better plans than she has now are available for her to purchase today, some of them for less money.

The sad truth is that Cavallaro has been very poorly served by the health insurance industry and the news media. It seems that Anthem didn't adequately explain her options for 2014 when it disclosed that her current plan is being canceled. If her insurance brokers told her what she says they did, they failed her. And the reporters who interviewed her without getting all the facts produced inexcusably shoddy work -- from Maria Bartiromo on down. They not only did her a disservice, but failed the rest of us too.

http://www.latimes.com/business/hilt...#axzz2jPcI0f8w
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Old 11-01-2013, 09:12 PM   #46
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Health Care Shoppers Aren’t as Dumb as Obama Thinks

President Obama calls them “substandard” insurance plans. But to many of the people who bought individual insurance policies that are now being canceled under the Affordable Care Act, their choice of insurance was a prudent decision that met their needs at a price that will be hard to beat under the ACA.

Jim Stadler is one of the “5 percenters”—the 5% of Americans with health insurance policies they purchased on their own—who got notified recently that their carrier was canceling coverage because it didn’t meet the tougher new minimum requirements of the ACA. Stadler, a freelance writer who lives outside of Charlotte, N.C., was laid off from a full-time job at an ad agency in 2009, at which point he became a freelancer and bought individual health coverage for him and his two kids.


Jim Stadler of suburban Charlotte, N.C., whose health insurance is being axed on account of the Affordable Care … Under Stadler’s expiring policy, his premiums are $411 a month, for coverage that always seemed adequate to him. “It’s not a substandard policy,” he says. “I thought it was a great deal.” The premium for the new policy offered by his insurer will be $843 a month, with coverage that’s more or less the same as far as he’s concerned. But new policies are required to include free preventive services such as mammograms and colonoscopies, and they can’t be canceled or priced higher for sicker people, which is why the cost of some policies is going up.

Since Stadler’s family’s income is too high to qualify for federal subsidies, he’s considering putting his kids on the policy his wife, a teacher, gets through her job. But that would be expensive, too. “The thing that gets me,” says Stadler, who voted for Obama in the 2012 presidential election, “is I thought Barack Obama was the only guy I could trust in Washington. He ended up lying to me because he said, if I like my insurance, I could keep it.”
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/health...195824524.html
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Old 11-01-2013, 09:15 PM   #47
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Wil Tomei: Estimated monthly premium for You, your spouse, and your children
$355.62 Per month for low income good luck with your plan. Looks like I'll be one of them family's out on the street with this healthcare or living in my house with none. Thanks Obama for giving me a clear choice on what to pick.

Kay Kendrick: I am fortunate to work for Google, our family health plan cost $1949 per month which Google pay most of. We will be hit with a 40% Cadillac tax in 2018 for having great insurance, so to prepare for that our benefits are being trimmed and premiums increased. Starting next year we will for the first time have a deductible and coinsurance on top of the high monthly premiums.
I realize I don’t have much to complain about, but considering the high premiums we already pay, you would think we pay enough, but you’d be wrong, the Cadillac tax will hit us HARD which will affect profit sharing, raises and ultimately companies bottom line. My family will now pay an additional $1500 per year for less coverage on top of the $23,388 yearly premium.
I can afford to pay more so it’s ok, but enough is enough, health coverage shouldn’t cost a brand new car every year. If you want to make health coverage affordable, then fix hospital billing, it shouldn’t cost $6000 to recover in a room for 6 hours, I mean come on, I didn’t even sleep there.

Nate Stafford: Got a letter saying my current insurance coverage can no longer be offered, but I can sign up for one of the new plans for a 120% increase in premium just to keep the same level of coverage. When is someone going to be honest about the cost increases this program is causing, and the millions who will be forced into the exchanges looking for subsidies will demonstrate the failure of the program and its unintended consequences, not it's success. Will someone please be honest about the costs of this program. Please.

https://www.facebook.com/Healthcare.gov
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Old 11-01-2013, 09:26 PM   #48
cosmo20002 cosmo20002 is offline
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I wouldn't have used that term if I'd have known it would lead you to ignore the rest of what I said. But I've yet to ever see you do anything other than defend the president. And yes, I understand that a lot of it is just to combat the insane Alex Jones type posts and put some reason into this board. Which is completely necessary because that stuff is both annoying and absolutely pointless. But the point still stands with actual factual posts/topics as well.
I readily admit I spend more time debunking the bullshit than piling on for the things I don't agree with 100%.

The original point I think was my comment about how the right-wingers are getting screwed over. I really meant nothing more by it than an honest evaluation of the posts I've seen on here. There's been many posts (coincidentally, I guess) by some of the most consistent Obama-haters about how they checked the rates and insurance will cost them substantially more next year. Frankly, I suspect they are either lying or mistaken, and that's based in part on the general honesty they show in their posts and in posting bullshit stories and links.

On the other hand, there have been a few posts by people who aren't regulars on the DC board. I think they probably lean right, but they aren't real outspoken on politics, and when they are, they aren't nuts about it and aren't calling Obama the devil. They have posted (coincidentally, I guess) that their rates are about the same or better. Just an observation.
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As long as Jesus Christ was the president of the US and approved of it Yes.
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Old 11-01-2013, 09:32 PM   #49
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"Hitler finds out about Obamacare Exchange Problems"



What he should have said: "If you have an insurance plan that I like, you can keep your insurance plan, period."
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Old 11-01-2013, 10:11 PM   #50
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You know , I dont Obama comes even close to the kind of effort that dude just put into that portrayal of Hitler. Obama doesnt cares about anything or anybody but himself and perhaps one of his secret boy toys. .
Thats a Doctored clip from Inglourious Basterds. Its a great movie about Jews locking up Hitler & all his ranking members in a theater,in France. Then setting the theater on fire, burning the 3rd Riech alive.
Am I shocked you have never seen it? Not in the least.


enjoy

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Old 11-02-2013, 02:03 AM   #51
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Hurry up Cosmo & tell Blake 5676 how you dnt agree with all of Obama's policies.

Whenever I see the letters L.W.N.J put together. The first thing I think of is Cosmo20002
True story
How often does that happen to you when you are out in the world?

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Old 11-02-2013, 05:55 AM   #52
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It's deceptive to include the subsidy in the "cost" calculation like the author of this article does. You can bet that this product had plenty of purchasers who don't qualify for those subsidies who will also not be able to keep the "nonconforming" plan that they like. Indeed, this woman indicates that in some years, her income is significantly higher than it was this year.
Subsidies grow on trees so they're free.
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Old 11-02-2013, 06:04 AM   #53
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Subsidies grow on trees so they're free.
So people who pay for OBamaCare will have astronomical Deductibles. How many of these people, barring a major illness, will ever reach their deductibles? Who will receive any benefits? People who pay nothing? We going to make sure all the non-working people reap the benefits and remain healthy while those who pay and work get nothing in return?
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Old 11-02-2013, 06:45 AM   #54
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No, but the real bad news is that she can get a better plan for less. Sucks for her.
If true what do you think the consequence of that is? Likely she'll have a harder time finding a physician willingly to take her on, because he or she sees that their likelihood of getting fair reimbursement through these great deals is not good.
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:11 AM   #55
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Will she sit with the wookie at the Sad State of the Union liefest?
Who is wookie?
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:31 AM   #56
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So people who pay for OBamaCare will have astronomical Deductibles. How many of these people, barring a major illness, will ever reach their deductibles? Who will receive any benefits? People who pay nothing? We going to make sure all the non-working people reap the benefits and remain healthy while those who pay and work get nothing in return?
This is the exact reason a good amount of people carry high deductibles. Most are smart enough to realize on an average year, they're not going to need a ton of healthcare so what's the point in paying 2-3x/more in premiums for a $1k deductible as opposed to a $5k deductible. All of their healthcare in a given year is going to be OOP, unless something catastrophic happens. BUT NOW......those plans are about TWICE as expensive as they were before!

I can tell you that in my office right now, and we're through 10 months of the year at this point, I would estimate that maybe 10% of patient's that have deductibles have actually met their deductible. The other LARGE majority are nowhere near that and paying for 100% of the allowed charges on their own. So their insurance isn't paying anything for their visits and the patients only benefit is paying the contracted rate rather than full charge.

I would also guess that approx half of my pt's have plans that carry deductibles and the other half have plans that cover everything and they have no pt responsibility (most HMO's) or the pt's are only responsible for coinsurance of 10-20%. I'm guessing these great plans, that the patient's obviously love, are going to start disappearing in the near future because they are what the govt deems as "too good".
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:57 AM   #57
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How often does that happen to you when you are out in the world?

Who said anything about out in the world? You think your comment is funny?
Its ****ing stupid ,but not
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:05 AM   #58
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Another?!?!

Yup.

Inside the Fox News lie machine: I fact-checked Sean Hannity on Obamacare

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I happened to turn on the Hannity show on Fox News last Friday evening. “Average Americans are feeling the pain of Obamacare and the healthcare overhaul train wreck,” Hannity announced, “and six of them are here tonight to tell us their stories.” Three married couples were neatly arranged in his studio, the wives seated and the men standing behind them, like game show contestants.

As Hannity called on each of them, the guests recounted their “Obamacare” horror stories: canceled policies, premium hikes, restrictions on the freedom to see a doctor of their choice, financial burdens upon their small businesses and so on.

These are the stories that the media refuses to cover,” Hannity interjected.

But none of it smelled right to me. Nothing these folks were saying jibed with the basic facts of the Affordable Care Act as I understand them. I understand them fairly well; I have worked as a senior adviser to a governor and helped him deal with the new federal rules.


I decided to hit the pavement. I tracked down Hannity’s guests, one by one, and did my own telephone interviews with them.

First I spoke with Paul Cox of Leicester, N.C. He and his wife Michelle had lamented to Hannity that because of Obamacare, they can’t grow their construction business and they have kept their employees below a certain number of hours, so that they are part-timers.

Obamacare has no effect on businesses with 49 employees or less. But in our brief conversation on the phone, Paul revealed that he has only four employees. Why the cutback on his workforce? “Well,” he said, “I haven’t been forced to do so, it’s just that I’ve chosen to do so. I have to deal with increased costs.” What costs? And how, I asked him, is any of it due to Obamacare? There was a long pause, after which he said he’d call me back. He never did.

There is only one Obamacare requirement that applies to a company of this size: workers must be notified of the existence of the “healthcare.gov” website, the insurance exchange. That’s all.



Next I called Allison Denijs. She’d told Hannity that she pays over $13,000 a year in premiums. Like the other guests, she said she had recently gotten a letter from Blue Cross saying that her policy was being terminated and a new, ACA-compliant policy would take its place. She says this shows that Obama lied when he promised Americans that we could keep our existing policies.

Allison’s husband left his job a few years ago, one with benefits at a big company, to start his own business. Since then they’ve been buying insurance on the open market, and are now paying around $1,100 a month for a policy with a $2,500 deductible per family member, with hefty annual premium hikes. One of their two children is not covered under the policy. She has a preexisting condition that would require purchasing additional coverage for $600 a month, which would bring the family’s grand total to around $20,000 a year.

I asked Allison if she’d shopped on the exchange, to see what a plan might cost under the new law. She said she hadn’t done so because she’d heard the website was not working. Would she try it out when it’s up and running? Perhaps, she said. She told me she has long opposed Obamacare, and that the president should have focused on tort reform as a solution to bringing down the price of healthcare.

I tried an experiment and shopped on the exchange for Allison and Kurt. Assuming they don’t smoke and have a household income too high to be eligible for subsidies, I found that they would be able to get a plan for around $7,600, which would include coverage for their uninsured daughter. This would be about a 60 percent reduction from what they would have to pay on the pre-Obamacare market.

Allison also told me that the letter she received from Blue Cross said that in addition to the policy change for ACA compliance, in the new policy her physician network size might be reduced. That’s something insurance companies do to save money, with or without Obamacare on the horizon, just as they raise premiums with or without Obamacare coming.

If Allison’s choice of doctor was denied her through Obamacare then, yes, she could have a claim that Obamacare has hurt her. But she’d also have thousands of dollars in her pocket that she didn’t have before.

Finally, I called Robbie and Tina Robison from Franklin, Tenn. Robbie is self-employed as a Christian youth motivational speaker. (You can see his work here.) On Hannity, the couple said that they, too, were recently notified that their Blue Cross policy would be expiring for lack of ACA compliance. They told Hannity that the replacement plans Blue Cross was offering would come with a rate increase of 50 percent or even 75 percent, and that the new offerings would contain all sorts of benefits they don’t need, like maternity care, pediatric care, prenatal care and so forth. Their kids are grown and moved out, so why should they be forced to pay extra for a health plan with superfluous features?

When I spoke to Robbie, he said he and Tina have been paying a little over $800 a month for their plan, about $10,000 a year. And the ACA-compliant policy that will cost 50-75 percent more? They said this information was related to them by their insurance agent.

Had they shopped on the exchange yet, I asked? No, Tina said, nor would they. They oppose Obamacare and want nothing to do with it. Fair enough, but they should know that I found a plan for them for, at most, $3,700 a year, 63 percent less than their current bill. It might cover things that they don’t need, but so does every insurance policy.

It’s true that we don’t know for sure whether certain ills conservatives have warned about will occur once Obamacare is fully enacted. For example, will we truly have the same freedom to choose a physician that we have now? Will a surplus of insured patients require a scaling back (or “rationing,” as some call it) of provided healthcare services? Will doctors be able to spend as much time with patients? These are all valid, unanswered questions. The problem is that people like Sean Hannity have decided to answer them now, without evidence. Or worse, with fake evidence.

I don’t doubt that these six individuals believe that Obamacare is a disaster; but none of them had even visited the insurance exchange. And some of them appear to have taken actions (Paul Cox, for example) based on a general pessimistic belief about Obamacare. He’s certainly entitled to do so, but Hannity is not entitled to point to Paul’s behavior as an “Obamacare train wreck story” and maintain any credibility that he might have as a journalist.

Strangely, the recent shutdown was based almost entirely on a small percentage of Congress’s belief that Obamacare, as Ted Cruz puts it, “is destroying America.” Cruz has rarely given us an example of what he’s talking about. That’s because the best he can do is what Hannity did—exploit people’s ignorance and falsely point to imaginary boogeymen.

Update: To check the plans I used this useful calculator from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
http://www.salon.com/2013/10/18/insi..._on_obamacare/
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:07 AM   #59
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
If you like your plan, you can keep it. Period. Guaranteed.
Ah, ignoring the entire 2010 conversation about the Grandfather clause, eh.
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:11 AM   #60
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Originally Posted by 2bikemike View Post
Trusting yahoo and the people who post there to be honest about their stories is like trusting Hannity and the people who go on there to be trustworthy.

They aren't.
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