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Article published April 8, 2013
Obamacare costs real
Cynthia H. Kramer Summit Township
It comes as no surprise to those of us who are self-employed and paying for our own health insurance that the Affordable Health Care Act is anything but affordable. In 2011, my health insurance was $1,593 a month for my family, with a $1,500-per-person deductible. It is now $2,390 per month, with a $3,500 deductible for two of us, and a $1,500 deductible for the third person covered. Two of us no longer have 100 pecent coverage after the deductible. This is a 67 percent increase for less coverage. I received a letter from Highmark explaining that due to Obamacare and anticipated increased costs, they were greatly increasing the cost of our health care insurance. After checking around, Highmark turned out to still be the least-expensive insurance for us. I have heard that under Obamacare rules, if you are on a government plan because you cannot — or will not — pay for your family’s health care, they may attach and keep any income tax refund for which you are entitled. I already know that if you are on Medicare and the government pays for you to go into a nursing home, they can take your home when you die. And, if you are forced to pay high rates because of a medical condition or age (as my family does), in 2014, the government is going to assess these plans an additional 40 percent, based on cost, not need, because it’s a “luxury” health insurance plan. My family is fast approaching this amount for health insurance. This ill-thought-out tax will put more people out of the range of health care. Obamacare is not free. The working public is paying for it — and paying for it dearly. Our representatives in Congress are out of touch with the real world and they keep chipping away at us with taxes on necessities. Just take a look at your phone bill and other utility bills for add-on taxes. And notice the federal and state taxes on gas. I think a 32 percent increase in the cost for health care, as stated by the actuaries, is a low estimate of what is to come.