With the recent budget deal in Washington where they actually did the job they are supposed to. Figure out a way to spend your money. The U.S. government is usually fair at best when predicting how much something will cost. This is probably because once you add a government job you cannot take it away. Nevertheless, addressing the cost of this law is fairly simple if you can apply these three principles to your situation to get an idea of what this law will really cost you over the next several years.
The first is the direct cost. This is what impacts you in the form of rate increases, changes in deductibles or other changes to your current plan that equals less take home pay. Millions of American’s are seeing this and will struggle.
The second is in the form on indirect costs. The number one culprit is uncertainty and this is what keeps businesses up at night because how do you plan for the unknown. If you work for a small business or a company in the service industry there may be a reduction in hours or businesses not hiring at all. These are costs for many people including younger Americans with student loan debt.
The final principle to consider when estimating the cost of this law is the collective expense on the nation and what that means for all of us. Currently we are $17 trillion in debt and this translates to about $52,000 per American citizen. The ACA is going to cost money over time and the question is can we afford all of this right now when we are losing money as a nation. As it currently stands, because of mismanagement there will be more costs shifted to younger generations to finance existing programs.
Many people do not realize how much money this actually is. Even worse is the fact that we lose one trillion per year as a government.
Here are some of the likely outcomes of those seeking assistance through the federal marketplace.
· People on or eligible for Medicaid/Public Assistance
· People Exchange Eligible (subsidies/cost sharing)
· People Covered W/ Employer Plan (They Could Lose It)
· People/Families making more than 400% FPL
· People Looking to Shop Around For Options (Maximum Revenue Targets)
· People Who Lost Employer Coverage
· Uninsured First Time Shoppers
· Young Professionals/Students Not Covered By Parents
· Service Industry Part-Time Workers
Networks Missing Providers
As we get into prediction mode, the biggest ripple effect is what is happening to the provider community as a result of such a bold step focusing on quality reimbursement and measurements instead of paying fee for service like they previously were. What this means is that healthcare providers are doing more with less, and many of them are organizing into larger organizations to make compliance easier and this has impacts on your doctor.
The problem is that these networks are narrowing under the new law and people could lose their doctors or hospital if they purchase a plan that does not cover services in their network. As we refine this product, the best thing we can do is ask questions that would inform them about how coverage and access may change. If we can also access all of their formularies we can help people determine whether or not a specific drug they need is covered. This is a large problem looming.
Study Your Formulary
Before you sign off on a plan through the exchange it is important that you study the formulary. This is the list of drugs that are covered. If you need a special drug for an illness you will need to make sure that your drug is covered under your plan. Some new plans do not have the best prescription coverage and out of pocket cost can be quite harsh. It is all dollars if you have an illness that is expensive. Even more important to change the conversation to reducing costs and improving the system.