Health Insurance

Can anyone relate to Ziggy? In this year where the candidates are playing the health care card I was wondering how many of you are really happy with their health insurance. I have seen my retirements benefits slip away inch-by-inch as my deductibles and premiums have escalated. What do you think?

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  1. Bob,

    I'm satisfied with my health care plan for now. I'm on my own (own my own business). It's always scary when I switch. I did change providers recently to get a little better deal. The screening they put you through is scary and the conditions for which they'll turn you down or jack up your rates are a list as long as your arm and with some very surprising "conditions" on them.

    Also, every year I get to look forward to an increase of an unknown amount. It's been three or four years now and it's never been small. It simply cannot keep increasing at this rate or no one will be able to afford to insure themselves. It's like the housing market was before the pop.

    So, to answer your question while I am covered now with a decent plan (high deductible and reasonable premiums), I am not satisfied that this situation is anything close to stable.

  2. We are very happy with our health insurance.

  3. We're happy with our plan. We have a Health Savings Account. It's a lower cost, high deductible insurance plan coupled with a [re-tax savings account. We pay 100% of everything up to a specified deductible ($4,000 for our family), after which everything is free. The idea is that you put the amount of your deductible into your savings account to pay for the expenses up to the deductible. You can choose not to 'fully fund' your savings account if you choose as well. If for some reason you do not make your deductible and there is money left over, it's yours to keep. It rolls over into an IRA.

    My employer offers both a PPO and the HSA. They will pay either a portion of the PPO premiums or, because the HSA insurance premiums are much lower, they pay the entire HSA premium plus contribute to my health savings account. The out of pocket premiums on the PPO adn the remaining amount to fully fund the savings account are almost equal.

    With the PPO, there are continuing costs in co-pays for everything. With the HSA, I pay no more. I pay out of the savings account, some of which is money I paid in, that I get back to pay for my health care. Once the savings is gone, the deductible is met and I have not more expenses until next year.

    It's a bit confusing, only because it's pretty different than what folks are used to doing. The first time you pay $100 for a doctor's visit or $180 for that non-generic you have to take, it's shocking. But you have to understand the math and know that you have a cap on your yearly health care expenses and the possibility of getting money back if you have a good year.

    I like it.

  4. I guess it is all relative. Up until 2000 the corporation I worked for covered my health insurance premiums in full and once upon a time there were no co-pays or deductibles.

    Over my lifetime I have seen corporate profits progressively trump employee benefits big time.. company pensions seem to be a thing of the past.. not sure where it is all headed.. maybe everyone is headed to Walmart level benefits :(

  5. Unfortunately, insurance premiums have risen dramatically. In each of the past 3-4 years, I think the premiums my employer has been quoted have risen somewhere around 20%. I can't blame them for wanting to change that benefit.

    I, frankly, want to free my insurance from my employer. I'd like to be able to own my own plan that fits my own needs rather than the plan that's best for the company to offer. But the system is set up make that hard to do and to make the employer sponsored plans too attractive to pass up.

    I'm lucky to work for a company that still offers good benefits and cares for the employees. Economic conditions are making it hard, but they are doing their best.

    As far as pensions, I have a friend who works for Honda and they still have a pension plan.


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