Thursday, February 13, 2014

Going private (insurance)

So today's MediCal meeting was sort of...inconclusive. The one conclusive part for me was that MediCal is a mess, is not at all as it presents itself (it is far from free!), and most importantly, is unreliable. The tired-looking worker said everything has been impossibly backed up for months, and will be for the foreseeable future. I asked what to do if B has an emergency or needs medical care right now. She said to go to a County ER and try to negotiate my bill. Um...what?

So she did accept my profit & loss statement, but only for now - I would have to re-qualify again in about three months, and said that then they would "really need" my full tax return so they could comb over all my deductions and decide for themselves what my income is (!). And this is a process I'd have to endure every year.

The sad fact is Healthy Families was awesome, but it's gone, and unless you're dirt poor (below poverty level) you're now going to have to meet this "share of costs" which as we now know can be your entire income!

So I left my case "open" but as I walked out made the decision to just pay out of pocket for a real insurance policy for the kids rather than rely on the inefficient, shady, and unreliable government. I just can't take the hassle, exposure to risk, and invasiveness. 

I don't know how I'm going to pay for two more insurance policies...but I will say this: had this happened two years ago, I'd be out $1000 a month for the three of us. With my policy being $200 cheaper, it means I'm really only going to be out another $100 than what I was paying last year (the boys' policies should come in at about $150/mo each, and they're pretty decent policies through Health Net). So it's not that calamitous. Not great, but not horrible. And it's really worth the peace of mind.

Can you imagine if I was relying on MediCal for my maternity??? What a nightmare!!!

1 comment:

  1. Luckily, my options have been more reasonable, but I was disappointed to find out that if I went through Minnesota's health care exchange (thereby qualifying for some good discounts due to my income level), M couldn't be on the same plan as me. In fact, she would have to be on some government plan, with a limited network (and we live out in the boonies, so a wide network is really important, especially with her health issues, which will require continued care/monitoring). Frustrating. So I just bought a policy outside of the exchange, which -- as it sounds like you've found -- was still a ton cheaper than what I was paying for my pre-Obamacare plan.