Healthcare and the American Way
As a small business owner for the last 20+ plus years, I have paid for my own healthcare insurance. Up until this time, I have always paid for the very best of policies – zero deductibles and nominal costs for prescription drugs. I can still remember that when I began shouldering this responsibility I thought the cost of healthcare insurance was out of this world. That was when I paid approximately $300 per month for a family of five. Thanks to the goodness of God, over the past 20 years, not one member of the family was ever hospitalized and family illnesses were few and all common illnesses. The insurance company has made plenty of money off our premiums over the years.
Now the kids have grown and are responsible for their own expenses and insurance. My current insurance plan includes only me and my rates were $609.00 per month, with a $2000 annual deductible, $35 prescription drug co-pays and 100% coverage after the deductible is met.
Last week, I received my annual premium increase. Now, one would think with the healthcare reform bill looming over these large health insurance companies like a sledgehammer, they would disguise themselves as ‘team players’ and limit the rate increases. This was not the case. Instead, my 2010 premium has been raised by $206.43 PER MONTH (or $2477.16 per year). The ceiling on my prescription drug coverage was also raised by $30.00 per prescription that applies.
As always, the price quote came with other options that minutely reduced the premium cost as each applicable plan greatly increased my deductible and out-of-pocket expenses across the board.
Well folks, I’ve just become a believer in the healthcare reform bill. My support of this bill is not because I believe its good legislation. Oh, no! There are far too many unanswered questions for the healthcare reform bill to be considered good legislation. My support of this bill is because I simply can not afford the ever-soaring, out-of-control medical coverage. While discussing this issue with other small business owners, I have found none that could afford what was happening to their healthcare costs, especially at a time when business profits have all but bottomed out.
I can only assume that those who are fighting for healthcare to remain privatized must have their medical insurance provided for them through their employers or through Medicare and Medicaid. The opposition may want to hold back on their opinions until they are assured how their future healthcare premiums will be paid. It’s wishful thinking that employee healthcare costs will remain stable. For, the way I see it, everyone will soon shoulder the massive increases in healthcare costs and responsibilities, be it through their paycheck, tax system or quality of services they receive.
Let’s face it! Until some party steps up fixes what’s broken, the healthcare insurance crisis will remain nothing but a shell game of pass the buck between big business and the government – and in any outcome, the people will pay for the costs and all the bureaucracy! That one party who will play the hero, will once again be the American people.