My Obamacare (Non-) Nightmare, Part 2


Yesterday, I shared my experience with Kaiser Permanente and the ACA. In a nutshell: I currently have a  policy purchased on the individual market before the ACA was passed; Kaiser informed me back in 2010 that my policy was grandfathered; Kaiser told me in 2013 that I could purchase an ACA-compliant plan or keep my existing plan. Fact is, the story isn’t very interesting because nothing went wrong.

However, you’d never guess that “nothing went wrong” was an option if you only listened to complaints about the ACA. Apart from the rollout of (which was badly and inexcusably botched), the other big complaint I’ve heard is that people were losing individual policies that they liked because they didn’t comply with the ACA. I have to conclude, based on my experience, that either 1) people in that situation didn’t have their plans in place before the ACA was passed, or 2) that their insurance companies had chosen not to continue offering their non-complying plans. (Another possibility, I guess, is that Kaiser made a huge mistake when it told me I can keep my current plan. Based on this article, that may be the case.)

But my overall conclusion based on all of these scenarios is roughly the same—and pretty boring: Continue reading My Obamacare (Non-) Nightmare, Part 2

My Obamacare (Non-) Nightmare, Part 1


Until the disappointing numbers were revealed about signups a few weeks ago, most of the news about the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obamacare) and its problems was anecdotal. We’ve all read and heard tales of individuals who were unable to sign up online, who faced higher premiums, or who were unable to keep their existing policies. I’d like to offer my own anecdote about that last problem, along with some conclusions.

Some background is in order. I’m self-employed and live in California. I have purchased an individual health plan from Kaiser Permanente since March 2009. I bought the insurance online though My premium when I first got the policy was about $375 a month; in four years the premium has increased a total of about $100 per month. I’ve used the plan very little, but I am acutely aware of the value of comprehensive medical coverage. (If you know me personally, you know why; if you don’t, I’m happy to share offline.)

Continue reading My Obamacare (Non-) Nightmare, Part 1