Obamacare “Fail” Stories

The White House has helped gather many success stories born of the Affordable Care Act.

Read ACA success stories here.

Many people have undoubtedly been helped: for example, the previously uninsurable with pre-existing conditions.

However, other Americans have been disappointed by Obamacare and believe it has worked against them.

Tell your “fail” stories by clicking “comments” in the horizontal gray bar above on this page or scroll to the very bottom of this page. Please be specific, be nice and stick to the facts. To read the stories, click “comments” or read below.

Read all of my HealthCare.gov reports here.

Featured comment:

The Tortured Process of Adding a Baby

“The following is a story I wrote about what it took to get a baby added to a health insurance policy post ACA. I know it’s long, but somebody should read it:

Back in the olden days (way back before healthcare was reformed so that it would be
affordable) when a baby was born to an insured family we in the insurance industry had to
collect the baby’s name along with his or her date of birth, write that information on a form
provided by the insurance carrier and then fax it to the company. Once that was done we could move on to our next task, whatever it was, because we had hit “send” on the fax machine… and it was done… the baby was added to the policy… after 30 seconds of labor. Mission accomplished. Misione compuito – if you prefer Italian.

I say that the entire process took 30 seconds, but it may have taken 48 or 49 seconds if the fax
machine was slow. And if the client wanted to talk about the weather or work through some post partum issues then the “entire process” may have lasted a few more minutes. But the bottom line is, there was time to talk about the weather or the blues, because the baby was added to the policy… because we hit “send” on the fax machine.

But that was then… and those days are long gone.

Today when a baby is born… well, actually, this might work better if instead of describing the
process, I describe the humans involved in the processes. So let me tell you a story. A true
story. About a baby who was born on June 4, 2014 A.D., in America. The baby’s name is
Hannah Johnson, 8 lbs 14 oz. Green eyes, brown hair and a beauty to behold. When Hannah
was born (the very first newborn to be added to the health insurance rolls of our office since
healthcare.gov went live) we printed out the Change Form from SelectHealth’s website and
faxed it in, just like we had always done. The reason we did it that way was because, to our
knowledge, no one told us to do it any other way. So off it went, on June 30, 2014. On July
7th we called in to SelectHealth to make sure that the baby had been added, because neither
we nor the insured had received anything confirming that little Hannah was on the policy.
Fortunately though, SelectHealth informed us that they had received our request and that the addition was being processed. They confirmed that “the addition was being processed” because apparently no one ever told the customer service reps at SelectHealth that they would need to add the baby some other way. When a few weeks passed without any confirmation that the baby was indeed insured, Hannah’s mom called into SelectHealth to follow up on the policy endorsement. She continued this process, calling in to her insurance company to inquire about little Hannah’s status, for a couple of months without any resolution. In fact it wasn’t until mid September, a good three months after Hannah’s birth, that SelectHealth told Hannah’s mom that they actually couldn’t change her health insurance policy. That all changes to the policy needed to be routed through healthcare.gov.

And that my friends is where the real story begins.

Healthcare.gov is a real website – built on myths – that Americans are required by law to use
in order to purchase real, not mythical health insurance. Now there’s nothing inherently wrong with a website built on myths; take theOnion.com for example. That’s a website built on myths that works wonderfully, like when they published the following headline during the elections: “Midterm Candidates Distancing Themselves From United States.” That’s actually kind of funny, especially when you get to the second paragraph in the article:

“In the run up to Election Day, reports indicate that every person campaigning in one of the 36 U.S. Senate or 435 House races is now treating any perceived affiliation with the country as a major political liability—and they’re moving quickly to sever all remaining ties.”

However, if federal law required us to get news about actual events from theOnion… well, then – as you can see – the website wouldn’t actually be all that useful.

Now before any readers fire off an angry email to me about how “MILLIONS OF AMERICANS
HAVE USED THE WEBSITE TO GET REAL INSURANCE!” Please note that I am well aware
that there are millions of Americans that have sent their information into the system and have received coverage in return, real coverage. Of course I am aware of that fact, I did it. I sent my information to Healthcare.gov and I’m covered. It was a mind bogglingly painful process, one that had me click through single-question screens that inanely inquired about the annual income of my 1 year old, which I answered with a “click” and then…. loading…. loading… loading… and so on and so on. Only to get to the next single-question screen that asked me if the same 1 year old had any dependents. But those were the bad old days right, before the website was “fixed”… right?

And of course we know that the website was fixed, because all kinds of media outlets have
been telling us that for nearly a year. For those of you who doubt that it’s been repaired I
recommend you read Time Magazine’s front page story published way back on February 27th
titled “Code Red_ Inside the nightmare launch of Healthcare.gov and the team that figured out how to fix it.” It opens with this very informative declaration:

“This is the story of a team of unknown—except in elite technology circles—coders and
troubleshooters who dropped what they were doing in various enterprises across the country
and came together in mid-October to save the website. In about a tenth of the time that a crew of usual-suspect, Washington contractors had spent over $300 million building a site that didn’t work, this ad hoc team rescued it and, arguably, Obama’s chance at a health-reform legacy.”

Alright, in case you missed it, I was being sarcastic about the whole “fixed” status of the
website. But seriously, I understand if the reader objects to my assertion that the website is built on a myth. Because really, how can it be a mythical site if Time Magazine confirmed that a band of techies “figured out how to fix it” over eight months ago?

Well, here’s how…

First of all, I didn’t apply for insurance through the government portal in November of 2013,
when it was universally agreed that the site didn’t work. I applied in April of 2014, two months after Time Magazine published its healthcare.gov propaganda piece. And although I was finally able to navigate the system it took a number of attempts (because the website wouldn’t load pages) and then one final 2 hour session that at last ended in success. But if anyone believes that in the modern era applying for anything online should drag on for a few weeks and then take an Omaha Beach-type surge of effort lasting two hours before the application process can be declared a “success,” I have no qualms stating that that individual lives in a fantasy world built upon one unfortunate myth: that healthcare.gov has been “fixed.” But I’m getting ahead of myself, this story isn’t about me, it’s about little Hannah, and her mother’s attempt to get her daughter added to the family health insurance policy. Sorry for the digression; back to business.

In mid September of 2014, only two months ago, Hannah’s mom made several attempts to
add her daughter to her policy online through healthcare.gov. Unfortunately for her, at no point could she get the website to work. So she called in to the phone number listed on the portal’s homepage to get help from a healthcare.gov employee. But get this, the employee said that she would have to call back later because the site was giving the rep an error and wouldn’t let him process the change. So she called back later on during the week, only to find that the same error that stumped the customer service rep during the previous call had reared its ugly head again. So once again, no change could be processed. So she called back again, and at last the rep was able to get little Hannah’s information. Now she had to have Hannah’s mother go through the entire application process (the same one I described above,) which was a drag; but at last the federal government had Hannah’s info! Problem solved right?


Once Hannah’s application was successfully completed the customer service rep told Hannah’s mom that before her baby could be added to her insurance policy she would first have to apply to CHIP, her State’s health insurance program for low income families. When Hannah’s mom pointed out that her family wouldn’t qualify for CHIP because they made over $60,000 a year, owned a home and three cars the rep replied that although she may be right about not qualifying there was still nothing she could do to get Hannah on the policy until CHIP had reviewed her application and sent her a denial letter.

And that is when Hannah’s mom turned to our office for help. On September 25th during a
three-way call with healthcare.gov I got Hannah’s mom to authorize me to speak on her behalf so that our office could try to complete the application process without taking anymore of her time. I say “complete the application process” because although Hannah’s mom had “completed the application process” earlier, that particular application was lost somewhere in the fixed website. But after a short hour of pushing through the website’s inquiries we again reached the end; at which point the rep declared, much to my surprise, “O.K., now the baby is on CHIP.” When I told him that I didn’t think that was possible given that no one (and by “no one” I mean no human being in the galaxy) had ever submitted an application to CHIP on Hannah’s behalf, he assured me that our problems were solved because the baby indeed had been added to CHIP. When I asked if instead of adding the baby to CHIP I could add her to the family’s existing health insurance policy he replied,
“Yes. All she needs to do is make her first payment.” When I asked how she would do that given that the payment for her family’s policy was set up to withdraw from her checking account automatically, he told me to “call the insurance company in a couple of days.”

So I called the insurance company in a couple of days, and… you’re not going to believe this…
they had no record that any request had been sent by healthcare.gov to add little Hannah to
the insurance policy. This upset me a little and I figured that while I had SelectHealth on the
phone I would vent my frustration with them over the fact that one of their reps told me over two months ago that Hannah’s Change Form “was being processed.” The SelectHealth customer service rep was indeed able to review the policy notes and see where on July 7th I had called in and one of their employees had used that exact language. I take specific pains to point out SelectHealth’s note taking ability only because when I called healthcare.gov back the next day I was surprised to find out that, not only did they have no record that Hannah’s mom had authorized me to speak on her behalf, they had no record that she had ever called in at all. As far as the rep on the phone could tell, there had never been any activity on the account at all. No applications processed, no phone calls made. Nothing. Niente – for those who speak Italian.

The rep did however seize upon the whole CHIP story, once I told them what the previous rep
had said about submitting an application to the State insurer. At that point every successive rep I spoke to confirmed that nothing could be done to the policy until after a CHIP denial had been received. So I called up CHIP to see about expediting that denial letter, but their response was “Denial letter? We’ve never received an application for a baby.” They did however receive an application for Hannah’s mom, so maybe we were getting close. I then had Hannah’s mom call in to submit an application to CHIP for her daughter. The CHIP rep thought it was a little strange that they were being required to jump through this hoop given that her application was certain to be rejected, but in the end the rep agreed that healthcare.gov wouldn’t add their baby to the policy without a denial letter. Unfortunately though, that denial process was going to take three more weeks, meanwhile Hannah’s parents were already being sent to collections for unpaid hospital bills. So we really
didn’t have three more weeks to just wait around.

That’s when after consulting with Hannah’s mom we decided that we would try to increase the family’s stated income to a level high enough to make the idea of applying to CHIP so ludicrous that not even healthcare.gov would require a denial letter. This of course would increase the monthly premiums the family had to pay (because health insurance premiums are now based on income not on health) but it was better than having their credit ruined by a bunch of unpaid hospital bills. But before I could make any adjustments to the family’s income I of course had to organize a three way call into healthcare.gov because, as you may have already guessed, healthcare.gov had no record that Hannah’s mom had ever authorized me to speak on her behalf. (Now in case you are wondering, we had to make that call because the website wasn’t working) Anyways, here’s how the next fourteen days went:

Day 1. Three way phone call to healthcare.gov to get authorization for me to speak on the
family’s behalf because there is no record that we had ever called in before. Attempt to get a
healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 2. Three way phone call to healthcare.gov to get authorization for me to speak on the
family’s behalf because there is no record that we had ever called in before. Attempt to get a
healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 3. Three way phone call to healthcare.gov to get authorization for me to speak on the
family’s behalf because there is no record that we had ever called in before. Attempt to get a
healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 4. No need for Hannah’s mom to call in because there is a record of her authorizing me to
speak on her behalf. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends
with the rep telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 5. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 6. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 7. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 8 .Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 9. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 10. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 11. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 12. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 13. Attempt to get a healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep
telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

Day 14. Three way phone call to healthcare.gov to get authorization for me to speak on the
family’s behalf because there is no record that we had ever called in before. Attempt to get a
healthcare.gov rep to increase the family’s income ends with the rep telling me that the system is down so I will have to call back later.

On Day 15, we finally made some headway. I didn’t have to include Hannah’s mom in a three-
way-authorization phone call and after multiple attempts we were able to reset her password (she had been unable to log into the site for two weeks.) Then, at long last, we resubmitted an application that actually added little Hannah to the policy. The following day I called into
healthcare.gov to find out if the addition really went through and was informed that indeed
it had, and Hannah would be added to the policy effective… … … December 1, 2014! This
of course, was of no help to me. Adding Hannah effective December 1st would mean that
there would be no coverage for the cost of her birth way back on June 4th. When I pointed
this unfortunate fact out to the rep I was advised to “talk to the insurance company.” So after
all of our previous efforts Healthcare.gov sent us right back where we started from, but now
both Hannah and Hannah’s parent’s hospital bills were over four months old. Very frustrated, I called SelectHealth and begged them to add the child to the policy on her actual birthday. The SelectHealth employees expressed all sorts of sorrow for my situation but in the end explained that they were legally obligated to follow the instructions that they received from healthcare.gov and healthcare.gov was instructing them to add the baby on December 1st. It was a dead end.

So back to Healthcare.gov I went.

Fortunately for me, the person I spoke to told me that there was a small chance that we
could get Hannah added to the policy back on June 4th, but it required that I lodge a
successful appeal with the higher ups at Healthcare.gov. Supposedly someone somewhere at
Healthcare.gov had the power to override the system’s defects to get Hannah’s birth covered.
And lucky for me the appeals process was a synch. All it required was for me to fill out a seven page form and mail it to the offices of healthcare.gov in New York. And by “mail” I mean the stamp and envelope operation set up by Ben Franklin. Although I was actually excited to spend the next few days wondering what city my envelope was traveling through and whether it was being moved by truck or plane or steam boat, I worried that Hannah’s parents wouldn’t have the time it would take for the Postmaster General to get involved nor could they stomach Healthcare.gov’s 90 day turnaround for an appeals decision.

I figured that I would have to take one more shot at a Healthcare.gov rep to find out if there was any way to expedite the appeal, and fortunately for me there was. After an hour on the phone with a mildly informed Healthcare.gov rep I was able to lodge an official appeal. The rep even promised that he was having the appeal “expedited.”

Fresh from that success, but doubtful that it would actually pan out, I decided that I’d better have a back up plan. So I made another run at SelectHealth and this time I begged them, explaining and re-explaining mine and Hannah’s family’s woes over the last four months. And after multiple phone calls over multiple days the people at SelectHealth suggested that they might – “might” – be able to plug baby Hannah into her very own policy that they would jump start back on June 4th and then deactivate on December 1st when Healthcare.gov’s policy kicks in. I was thrilled that finally I had someone on the other line who might have found a workable solution! In fact, I was so caught up in the moment that I actually called Healthcare.gov to tell them that I wouldn’t need to appeal after all. But instead of nixing my appeal the rep said, “Ummm… sir there is no active appeal associated with this policy.”

“Oh.” I said in reply. “There’s no record that I called in yesterday and spent an hour on the
phone lodging an ‘official appeal’ to have the effective date of Hannah’s addition changed from December 1st to June 4th?”

“No sir. None at all. I show that someone called in on October 11th though.”

“Really?” I replied. “Does it say what we talked about?”

“No sir. It just shows that someone called in about this policy.”

Now I’m sure that most readers assume that I come to this debate with an ideological axe to
grind. But they’re wrong. I’m not an ideologists, I’m an insurance salesman. I don’t care who
is in charge of setting up the system that get’s Hannah’s birth paid for, it could be the private
sector, it could be the public sector or it could be any other entity that exists within the borders of our galaxy. I don’t care who does it, my only concern is that it gets done efficiently. But unfortunately for everyone, the system our legislators put in place on March 23, 2010 is still severely defective. Yes it has brought coverage to many uninsured Americans, but it went about it in all the wrong ways. Contrary to what was promised on the campaign trail the average American has not seen his premiums drop by $2,500. Rates aren’t dropping they’re rising; nor were millions of Americans allowed to keep their plans no matter how much they liked them. Those getting subsidies to offset the cost of their policies might feel like the price has dropped, but it’s an artificial reality. The only reason some have seen price decreases is because the American taxpayer is now picking up their tab, diverting public funds from public projects and towards private insurers. All that our
efforts at reform have done is take a convoluted system and make it even more convoluted. Terminally convoluted I believe.

And this, my friends, is where the story finally comes to a close. Here in Utah SelectHealth
might be able to patch something together to accommodate Hannah’s birth while back in New York our billion dollar website was able to note that someone associated with Hannah’s parent’s policy made a phone call to Healthcare.gov on October 11th. It didn’t record the content of the call nor did it identify the caller. It simply recorded the fact of a call. And that’s where were at; Hannah’s birth might get covered, but then again – it might not.

End of the story. Finito – you know, for the Italians.”

Comments also pasted below:


Submitted on 2015/01/01 at 1:34 pm
67 years old and have Medicare Part A only, but am on wife’s company health plan; got onto Healthcare.gov and found that the CHEAPEST plan (either through a Medicare Advantage plan or a regular ACA plan) available to me alone would cost $581 month in premiums, with a $6K annual out-of-pocket, and $8.5K deductible. We decided to stay on company health plan even though they raised their monthly premiums to $404 a month for BOTH of us. Not sure what we will do when wife retires…


Submitted on 2014/12/30 at 9:43 am
Stories about the ACA providing insurance for people with pre-existing conditions fail to mention other options were already available. In Texas there was a high-risk pool which made insurance available at reduced prices (supported by state funding). As insurance is regulated by the state, all insurers operating in Texas were required to participate. Individuals were not required to participate. Employers were not required to participate. With ACA, the Texas program was discontinued.


Submitted on 2014/12/09 at 11:29 am
I am male, 34 years old. Prior to April of this year, my bcbs plan was $97 per month, with a $3500 deductible, including dental. In April, bcbs sent a notice of cancellation, moving me to another plan in compliance with the ACA. My premium has increased to $251 per month for health, and $24.50 for dental. So I now have to pay $6000 deductible before I get coverage, plus $3000 in premiums. I have a car and house payment, making about $42000 per year. This program is another redistribution plan that is punishing middle class workers who have to purchase individual plans. I have to have it if I get really sick, but it has really affected my quality of life.


Submitted on 2014/12/01 at 12:20 am
I live in CA and if you move to a different county you must immediately notify Covered California ObamaCare Exchange and not use the your obamacare Medical benefits until the new county approves you. Not only will your ObamaCare benefits be denied because you are officially out of Network because you moved you could also be charged with a crime. I did not get my care until 6 months after I applied for ObamaCare. I notified ObamaCare CA that I moved and 5 weeks later I still have not received any information from the new county. There going to send me a very large book in multiple languages to pick a network and a doctor in the network in my new county where I now reside. 5 Weeks & I can’t use my Medical Card all because of ObamaCare ! This did not happen before ObamaCare ! I am over 55 and none of my benefits are paid for either. Its just put on a gov credit card and in the future they will take everything I own. They never tell you how much is being paid to the insurance exchange or any of the bills. THEY REFUSE TO DISCLOSE COSTS !!!! Under ObamaCare. If you ask me we have been literally screwed and its only going to get worse.


Submitted on 2014/11/03 at 3:29 am
Wife and I have a 32 yr old daughter. She has never made much money and has no insurance unless wife and I provide it. For years wife and I cheerfully paid for catastrophic medical insurance for daughter. It started out about about $65.00 per month and up until Obummercare it was about $125.00 per month. It didn’t provide hardly any coverage until daughter’s years expenses hit about $5,000.00 But we were still happy with that, because daughter didn’t cost us all that much for out of pocket yearly routine medical expenses. And if something serious happened to daughter, and expenses got high, then medical insurance would step in and pay the medical bills. IOW, in case of catastrophic medical problem with daughter, wife and I would not go bankrupt yet daughter would still get medical care. But insurance company was forced to add extras we didn’t want to policy and raised monthly cost to about $295.00. Now that is too high and we cannot afford that. Guess will let taxpayers foot bill and get daughter onto Medicaid. Goes against our values, but Obummercare forces it.


Submitted on 2014/10/31 at 12:06 pm
Last year in all of the ACA hubbub, our family of four opted to keep our non ACA-compliant policy for one more year under the reprieve. This was our best option since we had switched our individual coverage from a grandfathered pre-2010 non ACA-compliant plan to another plan (It was comparable in price, and I understood it to be ACA-compliant back in 2010 before anyone understood what that even meant. Why were they allowed to sell new, but non ACA-compliant plans for 4 more years? Oh yeah, to be sure they had the chance to forever screw us out of grandfathered low cost coverage).

So now our time is up and I got my renewal letter. Highlights: My current plan is discontinued as of 1/1/15. Anthem has preselected a new plan for me, the ANTHEM BRONZE PATHWAY 0% FOR HSA. They will transfer my bank draft information to this new plan and keep withdrawing the premium unless I call to cancel. All very convenient, except:

My new premium is $938.20 monthly for a $12,000 deductible and $12,900 out-of-pocket max.
My current premium is $425.33 monthly for $11,000 deductible and $11,000 out-of-pocket max.

This is 221% increase in our monthly premium for a $1000 higher deductible. Both plans have preventative care. The biggest difference is that at forty years old with two boys (the youngest 9), I was previously able to take responsibility for my own “family planning” and opt out of maternity care since I have no intention of having any more children. I would happily get my tubes tied to prove it, but it wouldn’t matter (and I can’t afford to). All Americans pay the same amount for maternity care now, even the three males I live with. I estimate that maternity coverage is needed by most women for a period of 5 years or less and that most know when they need it and made sure they had coverage, even those with “poverty” coverage like medicaid. I’d like to know how many women have actually filed bankruptcy or paid the full $10,000-$20,000 maternity bill out-of-pocket due to lack of coverage. But now we all have maternity care, males too, for an entire lifetime. You’d think spreading it out across the years and genders would erase it’s impact, but the cost of maternity appears to be the same $500 per month increase it was pre-ACA for those women of child-bearing age that opted to have it.

Both plans amount to virtually no actual coverage for us. Year to date we have applied less than $300 toward our $11,000 deductible. We are now required to pay $11,300 per year for the privilege of paying another $12,000 before anything is covered. The only covered care our family will likely receive is my “free” pap smear that will really cost us more than $11,000. We will receive no further coverage until we spend upwards of $23,000.

I consider myself an independent. I voted for Obama–partially based upon the promise of more affordable health care for the self-employed because foolishly, I thought it was already too expensive. Now it’s basically a second mortgage. I was duped, and the elections are coming. The problem is big business insurance appears to be benefiting a great deal, so I don’t see this getting repealed on either side of the aisle. Anthem can now charge me twice as much for worse coverage, and either I pay the difference myself or everyone does if the government subsidizes it. Either way they get their monthly check for the full amount while raking in enormous corporate profits.

The only option remaining is exactly the same as it’s always been for the spouses of the self-employed. Secure a job with better benefits, but good luck because their prices are skyrocketing too while their coverage is shrinking.

So much for small business, the American dream and personal freedom.


My husband and I returned to live in California about four years ago. We had been very well served by the NHS in Britain for over 30 years. During our first years back, we had insurance benefits from my employer, playing roughly half of the premium which was only $400 for both of us a month. Though we had doubts about ACA, our premiums rose on our birthdays every year, so we were encouraged by the possibility of decent healthcare insurance.

We signed up for Covered California and were shocked that our premiums had skyrocketed to over $1300 for the two of us, of which we had to pay $410. (I was well-aware that, as taxpayers, we were paying the rest of the premium through our taxes and that the insurance companies were raking in the profits. After all, a health insurance lobbyist designed the ACA with that result in mind.)

My husband just received notice that his premium alone will be rising to over $800 a month in January 2015. Fortunately, we learned this before the November election so we can vote those responsible for this travesty out of office.

Whatever you think about the British National Healthcare Service, it works and the healthcare staff are superb, not profit-motivated like U.S. doctors. The service is free at source, there are no skyrocketing premiums and no health insurance companies to rip off the taxpayers.

The ACA was designed to ensure the insurance companies make a profit, get their payoff upfront, with no concern for the people who really need medical assistance.

Not affordable. Not healthcare.


Submitted on 2014/10/27 at 3:09 pm
My wife works for a medical group and the insurance was very good coverage. But after ACA went on the books, she/I was told that it would cost an extra $206 dollars a month for me to stay on the policy. The reason? I had a full time job and could get insured through my work. No problem… right? Nope. My current insurance is far inferior compared to the policy I enjoyed in the past. And… since our daughter stayed on the wife’s policy, we’re paying around $110 dollar more a month when you add what is taken from my check and my wife’s for health insurance. So… NO I didn’t get to keep my plan. NO I didn’t save money. Oh… I forgot. NO I couldn’t keep my doctor.


Submitted on 2014/10/27 at 2:00 pm
I am getting kicked off my current plan ,$ 1,230 month with no deductible,the NEW AND IMPROVED ACA plan is $1,720 with a $5,000 deductible.I am dumfounded when I see these news reports about how well the ACA is.It is only good for you if you are getting a subsidy,meaning that once again the “makers” will pay for the “takers”.Basicaly a $10,00 tax on me to support this piece of crap law.I also happen to be a physician,self employed,so I see that the employee mandate delay has helped hide what will come next year.My friends don’t believe what a increase in their insurance is awaiting them.All the available plans have large deductibles,every one of them,people are not going to seek medical treatment because they are going to have to pay for it until they meet the deductible,which in the “cheaper” bronze plans make them basicaly very expensive “catastrophic”medical insurance.


Submitted on 2014/10/27 at 10:32 am
I am in the insurance business, and have watched the insurance companies try to keep pace with changing the requirements from the ACA. The companies are doing what they must as required by law but the consequences are that they are spending money at an alarming rate just to keep up. With that, I have seen my family (2 adults & 2 kids) see the health premiums go from about $725 per month in 2012 to last years $823 per month to a whopping $2300 per month. We live in Texas and we do not have insurance on the exchanges (Obamacare) we buy health insurance direct from the insurer on an individual plan, but the cost of complying with ACA has driven up the cost everywhere! Failure is in the future! Failure of 1) the ACA 2) the medical service 3) medical professionals 4) our way of life!


Submitted on 2014/10/27 at 12:00 am
One of the stories that I have not heard about is the cancelling of state high risk pools because of the ada. For example, Utah and Iowa have already cancelled their high risk pools. Oklahoma plans to cancel theirs at the end of this year. We live in a state that has not yet cancelled their high risk pool. However we are in a catch 22. If they cancelled our high risk pool we would be in trouble. We own a business that is not making money. Because we have no income at all we cannot qualify for ada subsidies. Also, because we have a 401k we do not quality for medicaid insurance. So we would have to use up our 401K to quality for health insurance. My wife was talking to an insurance lady on the phone and she said that one should used their 401k to pay for insurance premiums. Strangely, we would be required to pay the highest rate for insurance that would soon use up our 401k. My wife said that perhaps it would be better to keep the 401k in case we had a catastrophic event. The lady then said “But then you wouldn’t have the safety net of insurance”. But with our 401K used up we wouldn’t have that safety net.


Submitted on 2014/10/26 at 9:35 pm
tried posting my “success” to https://www.acasuccess.com/ yet it never appeared SUCCESS!

ACA/Obamacare told Kaiser Permanente 2 cancel my health care insurance. KP did just that, then offered insurance that doubled my premiums with high deductibles and high co pay. I was told to be grateful to obtain health insurance.

State: oregon


Submitted on 2014/10/26 at 2:16 pm
My co-pay for meds has increased over $ 100 per month. This is mainly due to drug companies has increased all their contracts with insurance plans.


Submitted on 2014/10/26 at 11:27 am
My wife and I have had a policy with a company for the last year that was $1683 per quarter with a 10K deductible. That policy is being cancelled December 1, thanks to Obamacare and ACA guidelines according to the insurance company. The new plan they have in store for us if we want it? $2885 per quarter or $11540 a year. No thanks. We’re going to invest the money we would have spent and go without insurance. We’re in good health so far and will hope that it stays that way until we reach Medicare age, which will be in the next couple of years.

Last note. I agree with well known ex-radical David Horowitz’s assessment that Obamacare is simply a communist program. Takes an ex-Marxist lefty like Horowitz to know one. Read his eye opening book “Radical Son.”


October 23, 2014 at 9:28 pm # Edit
I teach in New Jersey. Our substitute teachers are not allowed to work more than four days a week because of Obamacare. This not only hits the pocketbooks and wallets of our regular subs, but it effects the quality of a lesson when the teacher is absent. As teachers we can select the subs we want in our classroom. The number of quality subs is limited as it is and now the best subs can only work 4 days a week. The subs did not receive health benefits in the past and to my knowledge they didn’t need it. Most are either covered by a spouse, Medicare or they are college students still on their parents plan. It is only October and we have received multiple job postings for substitute teachers.


Gary Clemente
October 26, 2014 at 11:27 am # Edit
My wife and I have had a policy with a company for the last year that was $1683 per quarter with a 10K deductible. That policy is being cancelled December 1, thanks to Obamacare and ACA guidelines according to the insurance company. The new plan they have in store for us if we want it? $2885 per quarter or $11540 a year. No thanks. We’re going to invest the money we would have spent and go without insurance. We’re in good health so far and will hope that it stays that way until we reach Medicare age, which will be in the next couple of years.

Last note. I agree with well known ex-radical David Horowitz’s assessment that Obamacare is simply a communist program. Takes an ex-Marxist lefty like Horowitz to know one. Read his eye opening book “Radical Son.”


October 26, 2014 at 2:16 pm # Edit
My co-pay for meds has increased over $ 100 per month. This is mainly due to drug companies has increased all their contracts with insurance plans.


October 26, 2014 at 9:35 pm # Edit
tried posting my “success” to https://www.acasuccess.com/ yet it never appeared SUCCESS!

ACA/Obamacare told Kaiser Permanente 2 cancel my health care insurance. KP did just that, then offered insurance that doubled my premiums with high deductibles and high co pay. I was told to be grateful to obtain health insurance.

State: oregon


Wanda Patsche
October 22, 2014 at 12:27 pm # Edit
My husband and I have a small farming business. We have one employee. In order to give health insurance as a business benefit, all of our health insurance plans need to be same. Nondiscriminatory. I get that. But this is where common sense is left behind. We are not able to purchase an insurance plan for our employee identical to the one we have as a family. No, Obamacare requires us to purchase a group health insurance plan, which is significantly higher in cost. This makes no sense other than for us to pay higher premiums.


October 22, 2014 at 12:37 pm # Edit
As a direct result of the ACA (as stated in a letter from Humana) premium rose from $119 to $250/mo
Deductible from $3K to 8K
No copay preventative care benefits removed or watered down. In system doctors reduced to two names.

Nonsmoker in “perfect” health (according to my primary care physician). Current policy now again will no longer available after December. Humana will not say what if any policy will be available in my market. Exchange policies not an option – they essentially offer zero care as deductible is unworkably high. Better to just pay out of pocket for everything.

I was in better shape and had better coverage before the ACA. No problem seeing/finding doctors. Now it looks very much as if I will take a year off from health insurance and see what happens.


October 22, 2014 at 12:43 pm # Edit
I’ve been denied twice for private insurance due to pre-existing conditions since the ACA took effect. (I thought that wasn’t supposed to happen anymore?) Once because ACA compliance had driven my small employer-based premium up 66% in the two years the State of California was ramping up for it, so I tried to get private insurance elsewhere. The other when I moved and tried to get “gap” insurance, because COBRA would have cost me $1900 a month. We went uninsured until I started my new job.

My new employer’s small business plan is grandfathered in so we’re still okay, for another year. The insurance broker said to get similar coverage that’s ACA compliant, the cheapest he could offer us would represent an 90% premium increase, with higher deductible.


Steven Graves
October 22, 2014 at 8:03 am # Edit
My wife has epilepsy and sees a specialist in epilepsy at the University of New Mexico medical center. Because of the ACA payment to doctors have decreased. This in turn has resulted in the Medical center deciding to close the epilepsy clinic due to financial reasons. This will no doubt result in a poorer quality of care for many people with epilepsy.


October 22, 2014 at 8:10 am # Edit
We have a friend who does diabetes research at the University of New Mexico. He has told us that because of the ACA medical research is being changed so that most of the funding is going to go to government agencies rather than universities. It is much more difficult to get government funding for university medical research than it has been in the past. He believes that this will reduce the overall amount of research that will be done as well as the quality of the research — since there will be a lack of independence. Research will be more likely to be influenced by political agendas rather than objective science. Also, his job is in jeopardy.


October 22, 2014 at 10:01 am # Edit
My family supports a relative. He has many congenital health issues and no income. He was a member of the Texas High-Risk Pool, until it was eliminated by the ACA. We were paying $421 per month for a PPO plan that had a $2,500 deductible, and paid 80%. Had to purchase an ACA GOLD plan to get same benefits – $603/month (going to $632), $1,500 deductible, $3,500 OOP. Net: 50% premium increase in 1 year for essentially same coverage.


lance williams
October 21, 2014 at 12:34 pm # Edit
In 2000 I was diagnosed with such a virulent strain of leukemia doctors told my wife to prepare to bury her husband and the father of her young children. By God’s grace, using remarkable medical science, groundbreaking medications and the generosity of an 18 year old bone marrow donor, 14 years later I am cancer free, have watched my children grow up and successfully work full time in real estate. Nine years ago, after leaving my television reporting job I had to figure out how someone in my situation was going to get health insurance! Well, federal law… yes, there was already a law in place… required that carriers provide an open application session for those with pre-existing conditions. So, long before Obama intoned that his plan would finally provide insurance for those with pre-existing conditions, I was doing just fine: I had insurance at a rate I could afford, seeing the doctors of my preference. It wasn’t cheap, but, looking back, a mere pittance compared to what I now face. Last year my family and I spent over $40,000 in premiums and medical care! Twice as much as before The Affordable Care Act.!. AND…. I am now forced to change insurance carriers! Before the election I begged friends, liberal and conservative, to heed my situation; it is NOT unique… it’s exactly what millions of Americans are now facing, unduly burdened by government intrusion and overreach. Yes, we needed health care REFORM, not a government mandate, and now any kind of reform is lost in the sticky wicket of OBAMACARE!
Lance Williams/Tampa


October 21, 2014 at 5:54 pm # Edit
One issue that isn’t discussed much is the marked rise in drug prices under the current health care law. Even generic meds that were previously inexpensive have risen to shocking levels. For instance, digoxin and diltiazem, two medicines commonly used to treat atrial fibrillation (the most commonly treated heart arrhythmia), have risen to well over $100 a month when previously they were very inexpensive in the $20-30 per month range. Doxycycline, an antibiotic that used to cost $20 for a 10 day course is now up to $200 per month. It’s the drug of choice for treating Lyme disease and is used for MRSA and acne treatment. Drug companies are allowed to pay each other not to make a drug and then when all the competition is “bought off”, the price is raised or an artificial shortage is created. The patients hurt most by this are patients without drug coverage or a deductible that pay for the meds out of their own pocket. As a physician, I used to be able to treat a substantial number of patients very effectively with available generic meds. That has become increasingly challenging in the past two to three years.


Gina Beatty
October 21, 2014 at 12:08 pm # Edit
My mother (age 69) and grandma (age 95) both received notice from their medicare supplement insurance company. Their premiums are going up 107%. The reason given was that since Medicare was cut to supplement ACA they had no choice but to raise their premiums. Neither one of them can afford this….but then again I guess they are old so who cares if they get care or not. Maybe I should just give both of them a pill?

My deductibles and copays have risen so much that I can’t afford care when I need it.



October 20, 2014 at 10:56 pm # Edit
Well, because of the ACA, my insurance company, which is through our retirement, told us our daughter, who is 23 and is a full time college student can not be kept on our policy, but if we wanted to keep her on it would cost $900.00 per month for the same plan. Right now she is just without insurance and I pay cash if she has to go to the Dr. Obamacare is too expensive, the Ins co said she could go on Medicaid…seriously? I think not. Plus the plan she could get had a $6000.00 deductible…what a joke..we give them 3 or 4 hundred a month for what? There are no more catastrophic plans which would work for someone as young and healthy as my daughter. So after she graduates we will see what we can do….


October 20, 2014 at 7:59 pm # Edit
When Obamacare started, I had a first class HMO. But the entire industry exploded in costs and I could not afford $3,00/month premiums. So, I am desperate to find another insurer. And I find what is called an A+ carrier and start paying $1,000/month. BUT: (1) drug costs increased several fold; (2) no coverage for DME and other features I had enjoyed; and (3) HERE’S THE BIG ONE–IT WAS BOGUS COVERAGE! My wife suffered a stroke; after four (4) days her hospital bills exceeded $35,000; AND THE CARRIER SAID: “SHE HAD NO COVERAGE” “SHE WAS NEVER ADMITTED” and “WE PAID ALL WE HAD TO” [$750!]. We had to declare bankruptcy. I connect the bogus carrier with the total and outrageous destruction of the health insurance industry due to Obamacare. The entire system was so ravaged by uncertainty, confusion, and deceit, that FRAUD SKYROCKETED.

HAPPY ENDING: My wife and I qualified for Medicare last month–and we now pay very little. [Of course, it DOES have its limitations, but…]


October 20, 2014 at 9:27 pm # Edit
Today, today we received notice of 2015 plan the exactly DOUBLED OUR PREMIUM. Excellent health, husband & wife 55, + 3 college age kids. Premium went from $8400 to $16,800. Plus a $15,000 family deductible. Self-employed. No health issues in entire family. None. Had a full plan with BCBS. Not a crap plan. we loved it. Forced to change insurers last yr and now premium DOUBLED. more than mortgage and car payment combined.


October 20, 2014 at 9:49 pm # Edit
As a college student, I had health insurance through my father’s workplace. After the ACA took effect in 2014, all plans were forced to include “adult” children, even if they weren’t students. To compensate, my insurer narrowed its network by such an extent that I was no longer covered–which means that unless I was in a “real” emergency (as defined by the insurer) I was out of luck if I got sick. That is, unless I wanted to drive 6 hours home to see my primary care physician. Thanks Pres!


Arthur Shatz
October 20, 2014 at 11:41 am # Edit
I have actually changed over to Medicare even though I am still working because the new plan that my company picked up had out of pocket costs that are far in access of what Medicare would cost my wife and I. Additionally, the union that handles our warehouse is in trouble because they are facing the so-called Cadillac tax for having a plan that is too generous. Hopefully, some fresh blood in D.C. can shift the discussion from repealing this law to fixing what is wrong with it. Now that we have some experience, the problems can be more correctly defined and addressed.


October 20, 2014 at 11:51 am # Edit
It seems that everyone who complains about their insurance rates and deductibles are the people that have become used to receiving far more in benefits than they have been paying in. Several thousands of dollars a month in prescription medications and hospital/lab procedures while paying much less than that in premiums. Who pays for the difference? It’s not the insurance companies; it’s the healthy people that share the same plan, the people that don’t have to take all those meds and use all those medical services. I pay close to 500 a month for health insurance. Haven’t even been to a doctor’s office this century. I also pay car insurance and haven’t filed a claim in nearly twenty years. Homeowner’s insurance? Never had a claim. But I keep paying the premiums. It’s insurance, not a way to lay off my bills to someone else. I’m in my sixties and I guess I just don’t understand how people can expect to pay a company 5 dollars and get 20 dollars worth of services back (or more likely – 6K a year for 100K a year in services). Let’s look at this another way. Suppose your car insurance was a thousand a year. You wreck your car every year and the damages are several thousand. Should the insurance company have to keep your premiums the same? Would you expect them to? Of course you wouldn’t, that would be insanity on the company’s part. Why is health insurance any different? I really dislike the ACA for a number of reasons and I think it will only make this nation’s healthcare more costly and more dysfunctional. I’ll keep paying my premiums for as long as I can still afford them but I dearly hope I never get to the point that the benefits are more than I pay in.


October 20, 2014 at 11:52 am # Edit
My husband lost his job after Obama came in, and then COBRA insurance ran out. He was still working, but as a private contractor instead of a permanent employee. Then our private insurance plan was cancelled last December 2013. We didn’t trust the security of the government exchanges. We priced out private insurance for our family, but could not afford the monthly ~$1600 premium let alone the $5000/person deductible. We are too young for Medicare, too “rich” for subsidies. We opted for paying cash and crossing our fingers with prayers for health. The policies available would have sucked us dry, and then we’d still be paying cash anyway to meet the deductibles. Having asthma/severe allergies, I barely can afford my meds. My husband’s doctor retired because of ACA. My doctor may retire as well. As far as I’m concerned, ACA is the true “die faster” policy.


October 20, 2014 at 11:58 am # Edit
My insurance company now has ultra-strict “pre-authorization” rules that delay care. I was recently diagnosed with an aggressive form of stomach cancer and require a very intricate, specialized surgery which will take more than 6 hours. The surgery must be done before the cancer spreads. I have a history of heart problems and needed my cardiologist to do a pre-op screening to make sure my heart is fit for the surgery. First, my regular cardiologist informed me they no longer accept my insurance. Then it took almost two weeks to obtain an authorization to see a different cardiologist for a consultation. Now we are awaiting authorization for the stress test. All this time, my surgery has to wait, while the chances of my cancer spreading increase by the day.


October 20, 2014 at 12:07 pm # Edit
Lost my job due to obama’s policies. We are self employed so use to paying high deductibles. Our premiums were $400/month, deductible of $7500′ covered 100% after deductible is met. We are not on any medications, rarely sick. Obamacare premiums $1200/month, $12,600 deductible, 60/40 after deductible is met. Barely any drs on the plan. Our taxes pay for others to have insurance, but we no longer can afford insurance. So we will be penalized on top of that.


October 20, 2014 at 12:33 pm # Edit
I am now 70 yrs old, working over 30 hrs a week as an RN to afford my leukemia medication. Medicare would make my out of pocket cost about 30% of the full price, about $900-1000 per month. The insurance I had several years ago required an out of pocket of only $25 (great deal!). When I went to renew my insurance 2 yrs ago….the beginning of ACA……my OOP share jumped to $1300 per month! Who can afford that on a regular basis? So I now get the generic from Canada, which sends it to me from India by way of Ceylon for only $850 for a 90 day supply. The generic is not legal in America, but that’s another story. I also fear that in the next few yrs, the environment will change and I will no longer be able to obtain it via Canada. And I”m ‘too old’ to get any government breaks. Thanks a lot, ACA.


October 20, 2014 at 12:50 pm # Edit
My primary care doctor retired two months before the rollout because she didn’t want to deal with the changes coming with the ACA. She was only 54. Our deductibles on our insurance went from $20 to $40 for regular visits and from $50 to $100 for emergency room visits and from $40 to $50 for a specialist visit. Feeling pretty lucky to still have insurance through my husband’s company. They implemented a discount for people who can prove they are trying to stay healthy by monitoring blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose. Also monitoring weight and body mass to determine programs to incentivize healthy living. These discounts make our insurance lower because we are healthy, but we don’t get any coverage until we meet deductibles of $1000 per person. The discounts (if you do all of the health screenings) offset the increase in cost of $250 for our family policy.


October 20, 2014 at 12:51 pm # Edit
My hubby and I have 2 college age kids on plan and we are self employed. We just got our hike notice going from 623 to 804 for our 10K deductible plan. It just surpassed our mortgage payment
on a 4K square foot home. Meanwhile our dental plan has remained the same price for the past 15 years. Affordable Care Act??Love how the government names laws-exactly the opposite of what they are.


October 20, 2014 at 9:43 am # Edit
I am also on Medicare. Last week I got a notice from Humana on my supplemental policy. Everything’s fine. It will renew and I will be covered.

There was just one tiny problem. They didn’t bother to mention what my premium would be. I can find that out AFTER the election.


October 19, 2014 at 11:38 pm # Edit
Feds want me to die off . Example : I no longer have eye coverage .None . Zilch . I had to take out a loan from my bank to get an eye exam, get glasses and have to pay the loan back in 2 years , I am disabled . I can no longer get generic prescriptions on 2 medications that I need . But , thanks to Obama’s progressive socialist agenda I read in the fomulary of a huge ”new” change ( this makes two books- insurance manuals I got 2 years ago and another 2 weeks ago I have not bothered to look at ) that if I needed a sex change that those pills would be covered .I found this out when I called my former gynecologists office and her staffers wanted me to look up a hormone supplement I needed and no that was not covered This is such a farce . Farce since I neither would want one or ever need one . I no longer have insurance to have a health aid come in and help me . I have had 3 spinal surgeries and I sure could have used them since I live alone ; I was a state licensed EMT before all these bone surgeries so I am not pleased with this hope and change mantra . Another thing my dad just passed away and this new Ebola czr blocked the funding for a cancer vaccine that may have saved his and millions of lives . I have much more to write but it get hard typing since I have also had hand surgery … Thank You …. Pam


Diane McGovern
October 20, 2014 at 12:20 am # Edit
My plan, which I liked, was cancelled. The letter I received stated it was due to the ACA. My old policy was $330. The best new policy I could find was $600 with less benefits. To add insult to injury I was billed $5.95 extra, on a separate invoice, for child preventive dentistry. I have no children under 26. Nine months into my new policy I received a letter from my doctor, the one I thought I could keep, that she was no longer accepting my insurance and that I could pay for her services or find another doctor. The only good news is that 12 days after my doctor dropped my insurance I became eliglible for Medicare…or NoCare, as I call it. I feel for others who have to live with the ACA. Yes, I am sure it has helped some. However, it would have been cheaper and more fair to the rest of us, to just give those uninsured a check to buy like the rest of us were. By the way, we always heard that there were 30 million uninsured. The only number we ever heard was 8 million (of which people like me who lost their plans would have been counted). Where are the other 22 million uninsured? Oh right, that number was false. But the low information people bought into it.


Mike S
October 20, 2014 at 1:55 am # Edit
I’m self-employed in California and had a nice HSA plan with Aetna through Dec 31st, 2013. Aetna decided to leave the California market altogether (wonder why?). I worked with a very good agent to find a suitable replacement, i.e., another HSA plan with high deductible to keep my costs down. Finally found one Anthem Blue Cross, except I suffered a rate increase of 64% and the coverage is no better. I already getting very nervous about next year’s premium.

I prefer more naturopathic, alternative treatments for most thing (I abhor drugs) and of course any medical insurance will not cover these. I have insurance for one reason and one reason only: catastrophic events. I had one such last year (appendicitis) which had a hospital bill of 25K to Aetna (I paid my 6K deductible with my HSA). What was scary was the non-discounted cost of less than two days in the hospital of 50K. The cost of this surgery 40-50 years ago, I understand, was about $ 500.

We need real reform. More competition, more HSA insurance policies (which will drive down costs), more personal responsibility, and far less government, which only makes things worse, not better.


October 20, 2014 at 7:37 am # Edit
I’m a licensed insurance agent who was sent across FL to a company that had dropped coverage for all of its employees. Instead, they offered each employee $100-200/mo. contribution and it was my job (with 3 other agents) the get them all signed-up.
One woman I was working with suddenly broke down and was literally sobbing in my arms. She had breast cancer. She’d already paid her high deductible and couldn’t afford to go onto Obamacare and pay the deductible a 2nd time for her treatment. (She was supporting a family of 4.) She’d already paid over $6K in deductibles and now she was faced with paying another $8K? Just to STAY ALIVE!

She just walked out – not certain of her chances any longer thanks to this disaster of an ‘Affordable Care Act.”


Michelle Ballard
October 20, 2014 at 9:31 am # Edit
My plan was cancelled in January. I tried the bronze plan with double the premium AND double the deductible. After denied charges for out-of-network blood work, I cancelled. I now have temporary insurance, and I’m looking into “legal” sharing ministries.


Kevin Dickson
October 20, 2014 at 9:35 am # Edit
I had to drop coverage for my myself and my daughter and son even though they were both in College. My retirement insurance went up 300% and exceeded my ability to pay on a limited income. It went from $185 to over $600 per month.


Bob in SoCa.
October 20, 2014 at 10:36 am # Edit
The premiumms for my employer provided healthcare plan have gone up and my coverage has gone from a good, full service plan to one with high deductibles and double the out of pocket costs. A medication my wife had taken for years has now been denied (same provider). The $250 per month cost is now on us and does not got towards satifying the deductible or out of pocket expense limit. I basically received a $10,000 cut in pay.


Mary Anne
October 20, 2014 at 10:57 am # Edit
I am on my husband’s policy through his work. Since ACA went into effect my premium has doubled from $400 per month to $815 per month, I’m sure it will increase again this year, also out of pocket cost have increased. My daughter has a subsidized plan through ACA, she just got out of college and isn’t earning a lot of money. She was sick recently and could not find a Dr. that accepted her insurance, the ones that did could not see her until December. she tried urgent care clinics but the closest one was 35 miles away, hard to drive when you are vomiting! This ludicrous law needs to repealed now!


October 20, 2014 at 11:18 am # Edit
We are a small family owned plumbing business in northern Virginia. We have always paid 100% of our employees medical and dental insurance. Our plan is cancelled, though Anthem describes the new ACA compliant plan our “renewal,” as of December 1, 2014. New plan, which is no match to the excellent plan we’ve always had, is 80% higher. My insurance rep says part of the reason for the extreme hike is that our group was largely young and the entire small group is very healthy. I still don’t know what to do. I cannot pay nearly double for insurance. I think about it and stress about it on a daily basis. Having our employees pay for part of it will be a de facto devastating pay cut. I cannot believe this nightmare! BTW, thank you Cheryl. This is my first public comment on my predicament. Is there a way out of this?


David Cohen
October 19, 2014 at 9:36 pm # Edit
We had a plan we were happy with that was cancelled because of Obamacare last year. After much searching, we found a plan with much higher deductibles and co-pays for almost twice the price. We recently got our cancellation notice for that plan. We haven’t started looking again, but every other plan we looked at last year had much higher premiums than the one we’re now losing. We expect to have to pay much more.


October 19, 2014 at 9:49 pm # Edit
I liked my doctor and I got to keep my doctor… because he was smart enough to get out of the insurance game years ago. I liked my insurance and I kept my insurance… in name. As my premiums rise, my coverage goes down. Because I have a chronic autoimmune disease, my medical needs revolve around prescription and lab coverage. I had no problem paying for my birth control (yes, even the $100/month kind) and if I could go back to paying for it and my old policy I would.

My labwork used to be covered 100%. When the amount of tubes being taken from me was more than the phlebotomist had space for on her table, I really appreciated this coverage. Now I am hit with a $50 charge for the cost of the blood draw every time I get tested and this is the in network lab. If I need something done at an out of network lab (e.g. my GP wants to do a blood count), it costs even more.

The list of covered prescriptions shrinks every year. I used to pay $5/month for generic prescriptions. Now I’m paying at least $10/month for generics and brand names are barely covered. More prescriptions require prior authorization, which means I go to the pharmacy with the scrip for a medication my doctor thinks I need, and then I learn I’m not getting it until my insurance company says so. My insurance company is inserting itself further and further into the doctor/patient relationship. I was prescribed montelukast for sinus inflammation so severe that I was seeing double from the pressure on my optic nerve. He wanted me to take 2 tablets/day, the insurance company thought I only needed 1. Barely able to breathe or see, I went home empty-handed and angry.

My Obamacare success is that I’ve gotten much better about cutting out my insurance company from my healthcare. When I was prescribed a $500/month medication that wasn’t covered by insurance, the drug company offered a free 30 day trial so that I could find out the drug wouldn’t work for me before I started shelling out the big bucks for it. When I fell and hurt my back, I financed my rehab. and got a 40% discount for bypassing insurance. For another prescription that my insurance wouldn’t touch, my pharmacy enrolled me in their discount program and saved me some more money. I still carry insurance in the event of something catastrophic but I prefer to keep my healthcare decisions between me and my doctor whenever possible.


Jim Klingler
October 19, 2014 at 9:51 pm # Edit
My wife’s hours were cut from 36 hours a week to less than 30 hours a week because (supposedly) over 30 hours would mean she qualifies as a full time employee which would require her employer to pay benefits. So now she makes less money, has an unsure schedule as an “on call” person rather than working regular hours and is forced to look for another job after working at this one for 10 years.


Mike Lewis
October 19, 2014 at 9:56 pm # Edit
My wife and I are losing our insurance. Why? Because we are a husband-wife two-person group. So much for Obama’s promise to keep our insurance. So much for Obama’s support for small business. So much for Obama’s support for families. If we weren’t married, we could keep our insurance. If we were two gay men or women, we could keep our insurance. But Obama, Reed, Pelosi declare that no two person company made up of mom & pop can have group insurance. No consequence to them because they exempted themselves.


Señor No-Bola
October 19, 2014 at 9:57 pm # Edit
My employer, a Fortune 100 Aerospace company, went to a “one size” high deductible ACA compliant plan last year. $400/mo with a $6000 deductible. No co-pays, just cash on the barrel head at the docs. With a chronic illness in the family, we almost hit the deductible but not quite. Bottom line, about $5000/year additional drained from the household budget compared to old plan, thanks to ACA.


John Bach
October 19, 2014 at 10:03 pm # Edit
Obamacare has been a total failure for me. With high monthly premiums coupled with even higher deductibles, the only thing that made sense to me was to go the “self-pay” route. Luckily, I have a great family doctor who works with me to come up with some creative solutions to provide healthcare services for me.


Greg Halvorson
October 19, 2014 at 10:05 pm # Edit
Obamacare is a market distorting, debt producing, doctor coercing, job, health, and freedom killing NIGHTMARE…Good God. I know several people who have been reduced to part-time hours with their mini-Med plan quashed… My elderly mother lost her physician and reports that her deductible has skyrocketed while her coverage has narrowed. They are paying MORE to receive less, because this … regime is FORCING them to subsidize people who can and should WORK… But that’s the plan — make EVERYONE poorer and thus dependent on a sick, bloated, power-craving Monstrosity.


Ben Thompson
October 19, 2014 at 10:10 pm # Edit
I am overweight. And before Obamacare, I couldn’t get a regular policy, but I could get a year to year plan for about $100 per month. After Obamacare, it went to more than $800 per month. I am a youth minister, so it simply was not an option. Paying the penalty is far cheaper than $800 for terrible policy.


October 19, 2014 at 10:11 pm # Edit
I received a call from my sister; she was very upset that she and her husband were having their health care plans discontinued for the second time in two years. This made me extremely angry, as I am very close to my sister. She and her husband are financially very careful, but don’t have money to spare. Shortly after this call, a friend stopped by to visit with my husband, who was not home. I couldn’t help but vent, and in the process, discovered that the friend had applied for the ACA, and was being subsidized at the upper levels of subsidy limits. Why is this an issue? Because of the fact the friend is in the business of farming, in the process of retiring. I am fairly sure this friends net worth falls in the 6 – 7 million dollar range, but because ACA subsidies appears to be based on income alone, and he shows little actual income, he seems to be able to take maximum advantage of it. He rationalizes that “Well, that’s how the law is written…you’d do it too, wouldn’t you?” Makes me wonder how many accountants and financial advisers are advising their clients to play this game.


October 19, 2014 at 10:15 pm # Edit
Texas BlueCrossBlueShield- $10K deductible
2010: $5220
2011: $5703
2012: $6051
2013: $6896
2014: $8196
Three people on plan aged 57, 59, 21
Excellent health
one physical per year for 59 yo. Others…no physical.
one total physical over 5yr period for 57 yo
Total out of pocket over this period ~ $4k of which $2k was for 10yr colonoscopy for 59yo.
Paid ~$36K for $4k of service.
Look at the curve. It is bending, yes…bending up.


October 19, 2014 at 10:21 pm # Edit
My friend had his group health insurance plan with his employer cancelled at the end of 2013. He looked into the exchanges and found that the insurance plans were too expensive on healthcare.gov. He decided to not have any insurance in 2014 because he could not afford it. Also, he looked at the out of pocket expenses and figured that they were way too high and paying a monthly premium plus out of pocket expenses were too steep of a price. About a month ago he was diagnosed with cancer. Our county hospital in Las Vegas, UMC of Southern Nevada, will not cover him for his surgery or chemotherapy. Since he is now a cash paying patient, no doctor will perform the surgery unless he comes up with at least half the cost which equals to about $7.5k. The doctors that perform the chemotherpay want the cash upfront, which is around $100k. Right now, if he chooses to sign up for Obamacare on healthcare.gov, the effective date of the insurance will be January 1, 2015. That is too far into the future and the cancer will already have spread throughout the body. My friend went from a normal hardworking American with insurance and doctors that he liked, to scrambling to find anything to save his life. Our family’s prayers are with him and I hope others’ are as well.


Kate Wright
October 19, 2014 at 10:59 pm # Edit
Last year in 2013, I lost my A-rated $1,500 deductible plan, A-rated hospitals (UCLA and Cedars), and A-rated doctors at Cedars and UCLA. I applied to (and paid for) three different healthcare companies to see which my doctors would accept, and the doctors said only Cigna is acceptable now, so I rescinded two, and stayed with Cigna, with a $1,900 deductible plan.

And guess what! This year (2014) that plan was canceled! The new 2015 Cigna available plans are $3,400 deductible or $6,100 deductible, and I’m not sure whether my doctors will even accept either of those inferior plans.

As soon as I know more, I will be back in communication.

Thanks, Sharyl!!!


Sarah Sweet
October 19, 2014 at 11:17 pm # Edit
Obamacare related: Administration often points out that it has saved money for Medicare participants. I am on medicare and for this year, 2014, my co-pays for drugs and primary physician services both increased. Next year, 2015, my monthly premium is increasing by $25/month, $300/year. The only thing that went down because of Obamacare is what they pay the doctors and hospitals. Medical cost increases for me are not as huge and as direct participants in Obamacare, but I wanted to point out that any Obama Administration success story about how it has benefited retirees on fixed incomes is a

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50 thoughts on “Obamacare “Fail” Stories”

  1. Robert Kavanaugh

    For Jan & Feb, we had a subsidized Blue Shield Silver ppo 90. But, for March we moved to the PPO Platinum. (paid Feb); No cards/account arrived until April 30, (paid May 2); This started the so called 90-day grace period promulgated at 45 CFR 158.270(g). It’s not a 90-day grace period at all, in fact the rules are quite complex and set you up for termination on the last day of the third month of the first payment in arrears, so June 5, our payment for May is posted, and June 30, our payment for June arrives at BS. We contact the CS Rep at BS, he says everything is fine the account is current, but BS fails to post the check until July 1. On July 1, BS retroactively terminates our policy to April 1, (the first month of late payment), and notifies us ten days later. The following fourteen days is consumed with grievances, appeals, studying CMS federal regulations, and documenting, arguing. Finally, we have submitted matter to an administrative law judge to declare the QHP (Blue Shield) declared in substantial violation of their agreement so that we can actually get and use health insurance. The same day I received the termination letter, I experience a medical issue that might have degraded to a life threatening situation. The bureaucracy was not designed to deliver health care. In fact, so far I see no evidence it was designed to anything other to cash my four checks and take the governments subsidies too. In exchange, my life is consumed by dozen to hundreds of hours of explaining to disinterested Blue Shield Reps, why a fully paid for account shouldn’t be terminated for non-payment, all to no avail. It’s just fortunate that most things tend to heal themselves, because if one’s life is dependent on this system of health care, one is as good as dead.
    I am equally as angry that this injustice has taken up residence in my psyche, and I’ve been blogging, logging, writing, analyzing and critiquing CMS policy because of it. The frustration of it all has consumed me. I have a job you know, and I haven’t done it in twelve days now. Health insurance was never ever more than a ten minute a year concern for me. Now, I will go bankrupt and still receive no medical care for this monster.

  2. I had insurance as part of my retirement package with KY State government, I still have the insurance, however, to have a colonoscopy and endoscopy was $1500 out of my pocket and would have been more had I not already had an prior ER visit. The last one I had had before Obamacare, I had to pay $450.00. I was then hospitalized and out of a $32,000 hospital bill, the insurance co. paid apx $5000, of course I did not have to pay above my total out of pocket for the year, but why does the ins. I have which is receiving the same premiums as before not having to pay any more than that? They are still getting the same money, and the insurance offered to my working daughter has such a high deductible it is almost like not having ins. The only good it would be is for a hospital visit, and then the insurance is only going to pay $5000 toward the bill. In my case they paid 0 for all of the test’s ran while in the hospital. As far as I can see the ones that really came out in this deal are the Insurance Companies. The doctors and hospitals are not, and I don’t think insurance with outrageous deductibles is anything to be that excited over. I was a single parent with a sick child when she was growing up, I could not have made it with that kind of insurance, had to work 2 jobs most of the time to survive and had a much better insurance than she is now being offered.

    1. You are right, Cheryl. The ACA was never intended to help patients. It was always meant to differ health care costs off of the insurance companies to the patients. Obama worked closely with the insurance companies. “Yeah, we’ll force people to buy your product and charge them more for it than they originally paid.”

  3. Sorry please add to my above comments, the point is there will be a lot of young people paying premiums that will never reach their deductible, but yet the insurance companies are collecting premiums. Unless having a child or some unfortunate illness, a large number of younger people probably won’t be hospitalized. From the time I had a child in 1982 until outpatient surgery in 2006 I never used anything other than Dr. visits and occasional prescription for myself. So I would think a lot of premiums will be collected with no payments ever being made. With average working families or single parents to pay the premiums and then still have to pay all of the Dr. bills and other costs up to the high deductibles I don’t see how they can do it.

  4. Without health care at all there was MISP Medically Indigent Services Program. Bottom of the barrel type of thing. This new program kind of pissed me off. I had to drop my doctor of 40 some odd years. And find a new one. Once I did, I get a letter in the mail saying she was no longer accepting medical. I need dental work badly since being unemployed I couldn’t scape enough $ for a down payment for the work I needed. The Denti-cal program also prevents my going to the dentist office I have been going to for the past 30 years. I found a dentist that still accepted denti-cal and went to see him. What the DDS said didn’t sit right with me. Saying all my teeth need to be extracted (I already knew this) and dentures. But he said the bottom plate will NEVER fit properly no matter how much adhesive used. Because of my jaw. I went home and decided to write an email to the White House. It was the next day I get a call from the Medical Office in No. CA. saying the White Forwarded my letter to them. I was asked what was happening. Then told me that what ever procedure I need to have done to make my quality of life better they will cover it! Implants… whatever! And instructed me on what the DDS has to do to get it covered so the work will be approved. I was blown away! He also informed me about the new Obama care that will be rolling out in a few months for the affordable care. Sounds like a winner to me!

  5. I HAD insurance that cost me $212. per month til that “IDIOT” took over….now Obamacare wants me to pay $525. per month that I can not afford….AND that is with a $5000. decuctible and super high co-pays…..are you kidding me? So, I am 63 years old, no insurance, paid the fine for that and have to take my chances!!!!! So “HE” can give more to the illegals, robbers, rapists, crack heads, jail birds and lazy ass people sucking off the system! I worked all my life and am still paying taxes from my little pension…..for what? Never sucked off the system, raised two boys, 1 in the Army for over 22 years, 1 in Law enforcement over 10 years!!!! MY government has tossed me aside and forgotten about me but stills sucks off of me!!! Obama will go down in history as the biggest Ass-hole Pres. we ever had.

  6. Okay, So let’s be honest my family barely make 16,000-18,000 a year. We are dirt poor and constantly struggle to make ends meet. My son has autism and is covered by SSI and my daughter through Medicaid. So, that means just my husband and I aren’t insured. He has diabetes and now has heart issues. I am overweight but generally healthy. I was excited at first to finally get some coverage. I wanted insurance for my husband and I so, I called the number and applied. Ugh…. First it took 3 hours just to get through and the website was a mess. They said we qualified for Medicaid but since Texas didn’t expand it we don’t have to pay the fine and have no coverage. They also said if we wanted coverage we could pay 520 a month and 10,000 deductible. The plan was the bronze and cheapest… Yeah like I can afford that on what we make a month and we don’t even qualify for subsidies. So, then they said well go to the ER if it’s an emergency or for me go to Planned Parenthood…. No, thanks! We are screwed… & the medical bills just keep adding up.

  7. I was recently told by my insurer Anthem of California that my small group health plan would be no longer available as of 12/1/2015. We were mapped to the corresponding “silver” ACA plan ( “mapping” means the same benefits not the same premium). The premium costs would increase by $700 a month (approximately 50%, hooray for affordable care). But wait there’s mor. I can get a bronze plan for an approximately $600 a year increase. Unfortunately the deductible is increased from $5000 to $6000 and the coverage’s are worse . Needless to say I am underwhelmed. My family and I are part of the large group of people ill served by this boondoggle.

  8. ObamaCare (ACA) in the end will result in rationed health and the deaths of many many people. My proof for that statement already exists, just look at how many veterans died waiting for health care from the Veterans Administration.

  9. I’m a small business owner in Southern California with 17 employees, all full-time.
    I provided health insurance for my employees for 20 years prior to the ACA becoming law because it was the right thing to do and because it helps us to retain quality employees.
    Prior to the ACA we had been experiencing yearly rate increases of about 8-10%. Typically we would cut benefits and/or increase co-pays to offset these costs, enabling us to maintain our formula of 70% employer-paid premium to 30% employee-paid.
    In 2013, after the ACA became law our insurance company offered to extend our existing policy for 15 months at the same price to put our year end in line with the calendar year, taking us to December 2014.
    Our 2015 renewal came with a 22% price increase. We were forced to cut our company contribution to 60% and again increase co-pays.
    Our 2016 renewal has just hit my inbox.
    The price increase this year is 25.2%.
    I have no idea what I’m going to do, because there is no budget for that kind of an increase.
    I never really believed Obama’s promises of cost reductions for health insurance policies, but why is no one speaking up about this. Millions of people are quietly gritting their teeth and writing these checks, and I hear nothing about it in the media. To say I’m frustrated would be putting it mildly.

  10. My wife’s premium from Fla BCBS doubled from $ 281 to $ 570 per month; her deductible increased 50%. I complained to Sen. Nelson who sent me a form letter explaining our health system was broken and he tried to fix it. Had he fixed his spacecraft like that he’d be circling Uranus by now.

  11. Sharyl

    you might want to do an investigation into how much has been spent on the enrollment plan etc.

    you have mentioned 300 million dollars on the failed launch web site. I think I have seen numbers more then double that.

    so basically at 300 million the government could just have given each person in the USA a million dollars to buy their own coverage and not done the launch. truth is that before anyone gets any coverage the number for what could have been given to the citizens (instead of the corporate and crony tribal members and friendsof obama) several million dollars each.

    and this is before any health care is doled out.

    some one with a voice needs to hammer this long and hard and get the people off their kisters.

  12. As a disclaimer, I work for a City government agency and I have insurance through the California Public Employees Retirement system which offers the “Cadillac” plans. We have about 10 policies to choose from. My agency helps to defray the costs but does NOT pay for our insurance and when we retire, we get about $300/month to go toward medical costs; when employed we have the money taken out pre-tax which *I believe* adversely affects us because we pay far more than the 9.5% of my income on medical costs but I can’t deduct the additional costs over the 9.5% from my income for tax purposes (admittedly I’m not that great at math – yes, our taxable income is reduced but somehow it seems inequitable to me at tax time when the out of pocket and other medical/dental costs don’t add up to 9.5% so I can’t deduct that).

    In my situation, before Obamacare, the amount set aside to defray the costs nearly covered the premium amount for two people (back then it was a little less than $1,000/month and no deductibles). Just got our notification that our 2015 policy for two people will go up in 2016 by $200/month to $1600 (plus deductible of $2,000/year) – my mortgage is $1,660/month!!!!!! For two people, the policy choices run from $1443 to $2067 per month. Two years ago when Obamacare really started affecting us we moved to a policy with a deductible. We are paying roughly half of the premium per month (to be $800) which is a lot for us. Also, our out of pocket costs have become more common place. I thought preventive things like colonoscopies were covered but I still had to pay an additional $300 out of pocket for the procedure. Am looking at changing policies for 2016 – with where we live and our ages (I’m assuming) we would have about $850/month premium with a $5,000 / per person deductible so we’d go from paying $19,000/year just on premiums to $10,000/year just on premiums. I figure it’s better to put the additional $9,000 per year into paying for the office visits/prescriptions myself and having probably $7-8,000 left over to put into a personal savings account to use for later IN CASE we have a major medical event. The other thing that is disturbing is that the premium costs offered by CalPERS carry over when you retire…for many people that would mean they either don’t retire or they choose between a mortgage or health insurance. Something is wrong when your health insurance is as much or more than your mortgage.

    Seems to me that this is defeating Obamacare/State of California’s means for subsidizing/paying for those that didn’t have and need insurance…less of my money will be going into the system. I feel so sorry for those people that had the low cost policies (the ones we are now choosing) and are facing the huge increases. It seems so broken in so many places – by forcing someone like me to make a financial choice to pay less into the system, I will not only NOT go to the doctor unless I absolutely have to, I will be paying less into the system to help subsidize those that need insurance, most likely causing the government to tax me more down the line somewhere else!

  13. Before Obamacare was instituted our family of 6 was covered under an excellent insurer of our choice thru my husband’s employer. There were several different preferred plans & tiers of coverage to choose from. We had our Dr, our children were able to keep their pediatrician of several yrs, fairly low annual deductible & office/prescription co-pays. For a family of six, with excellent coverage, we paid $400/mon. This included a dental & vision plan rider for all. As well as a health savings debit card, etc.
    For an extra $140/month my husband & I had $250,000 life insurance, disability ins, everything!

    Once Obamacare came into play…..our health coverage stayed exactly the same, however, our premiums shot up to $1460/month for our family of six!!! Without the alacart extras…the company opted out of all the extra benefits, they couldn’t afford it!

    Well….we could not afford the nearly $1000 uptick in insurance….not to mention the company (a high-demand trade service) couldn’t afford all their employees so they began laying people off. My husband was offered to keep his job, but he would have to agree to an hourly decrease by HALF!!! He shopped around and found a commission job…little to no benefits…health insurance offered at that job comparable to previous, however it was $1200+/month…no extras plus a $12,000yr deductible. There was no way.
    He didn’t make enough to cover our insurance & live at the same time.
    He left in search of yet another job so that we could eat. We made literally $300/yr more than poverty level for 6ppl at that point & didn’t qualify for any outside help (food assistance, etc).
    We had to move 5 times in 2yrs. We lost a house we had been leasing to own. We had to leave the school district, and downsized considerably!
    He was hired at another company & before benefits even began they went under and didn’t pay their employees! We did not own credit cards so had cashed in some savings ….and didn’t pay taxes so we could live. We ended up having to file bankruptcy. Silliness for a couple who did not even have credit card issues. We owed taxes and that shot us into a 5yr chpt 13 bankruptcy.
    Finally found stable employment…pay no where near what it was. I stay at home because the cost of day care is astronomical, but I have since taken a part time job cleaning a building on a weekly basis (no benefits).
    Our insurance now thru his employer is the worst offered. No options, huge deductible. Unbelievable even larger one via Obamacare! We lost our Dr because new ins is thru a group that caters their own physicians, clinics, hospitals, etc. Their care is mainly triage with the offer of a nurse practitioner 98% of the time (if not a student resident). It is degrading, and demeaning. Thankfully thru our state the children were opted in a state funded kids health program (for now) which we pay on an income based scale & they are able to keep their Dr.

    As of today I am still waiting for my low ranking group plan ins card that has taken longer than 8wks to arrive. Here’s hoping I don’t fall ill between now & then!

    Sadly, our experience is not uncommon, we know several middle/working class families who are still in the middle of their struggle with this.
    Obamacare has run several really good companies out of business. Everyone we know has lost wages, lost doctors & preferred coverage, has experienced an insurmountable rise in their premiums ( as well as deductibles), and many have lost their jobs or had to relocate in order to survive. There is only one couple we know who did not have to file bankruptcy after 2008…and they were able to move back in with his parents. Some of us don’t have that option.

    Obamacare….it is one of the WORST things to happen to the working class families who make up the core of this nation. We haven’t recovered yet.

  14. I am a home care physical therapist and have multiple sclerosis. I have never been without healthcare. I had to pay for Cobra insurance for a 6 month period once to prevent losing my ability to get insurance. I thought that the Cobra insurance cost was terrible – almost 1500 a month but my insurance rates have gone up every year since Obamacare came to be. I am not sure I can afford to carry it anymore.
    I am married and have two children who still qualify for coverage under my plan. I presently have one of the boys on my insurance and just received my quote for both on the plan. This is the message I received: (I live in Michigan)

    The following is the quotes for you and or you and your family for the Simply Blue PPO Gold $1000:
    For Medical/RX the monthly cost is: $2,526.82 and if you would like to add Dental and Vision the monthly cost is: $2,669.08 – this total will be broken into bi-weekly paycheck amounts. Deduct $356.76 from Medical/RX only or Deduct $381.17 from the Total amount to get total for 3 people instead of 4.

    The following is the quotes for you and or you and your family for the Simply Blue PPO Silver $4000:
    For Medical/RX the monthly cost is: $2,051.24 and if you would like to add Dental and Vision the monthly cost is: $2,193.50 – this total will be broken into bi-weekly paycheck amounts. Deduct $289.61 from Medical/RX only or Deduct $314.02 from the Total amount to get total for 3 people instead of 4.

    That is $21,000 a year for me and my husband, $31,000 a year if I carry my boys on the insurance too.

    If you need further verification on this, I can get it for you.

  15. My son, 27, is an excellent craps dealer in Vegas for a large corporate-owned casino. He’s worked there 4 years, part-time, trying to get a full-time position. Like many service workers, his hours have now been cut due to Obamacare. He has gone from getting 4 days a week to only 2 days because the casinos are now hiring many part-time workers (rather than offering loyal dealers full-time positions) — to make sure they don’t have to pay for healthcare for these workers.

    He can’t make a living on 2 days of work, and has to look for a second job – or another career. On top of that, he had to pay a penalty on his tax return because he can’t afford to get the Obamacare insurance.

    This is happening in many other industries all across the country. Many of these service workers are young people, too. This story is not being told.

  16. Add one more story. We are self employed & provide & pay for 100% of insurance & health cost. Husband had a hospital only policy for emergencies, It went up 40% before they pulled the plug & moved out of the state of tx. a insurance broker was able to set him up on BCBSTx at under 1K per month…1 person 5K deduct. Me & granddaughter have had a BCBSTX policy for 12 years, since Obamacare cost have gone up 40% & lower limits on my RX plans, I pay $645 per month for the 2 of us. Just got a notice in the mail today that my plan would be phasing out by year end & they would be sending me information for my 2016 coverage options. It’s crazy & I’m considering dropping coverage altogether

  17. Sorry to use my real name. I am not concerned or creative enough to come up with an alias.

    I work for a nationwide employer. Healthcare has been offered to our employees at 32 hours a week. I was one of many who was only scheduled at 30 hours each week. When ACA began, my employer was forced/incentivized/encouraged to offer healthcare at 30 hours a week. Finally. I signed up and obtained coverage. Approximately 18 days later I slipped on sidewalk ice going to Men’s Bible Study one Saturday morning and broke my back. 7 vertebrae were fused, I am now titanium reinforced.

    What would my life and my financial security be like now without ACA having employers offer healthcare to more employees? I am very thankful for ACA. There were many medical horror stories before ACA, there are different ones after ACA. All of these families have suffered from medical costs.

    I believe we have problems in this country with how our insurance companies, medical personnel, employers, and all levels of government treat health care. Different proposals shift who is covered or who pays – but I believe that profit continues to prevent fair and adequate coverage for all. I do not know the answer.

    1. Glad it worked out for you. Do you think it would have been different if you worked for a small employer who would have cut your hours so they can afford to pay you instead of ACA?

  18. I work in a hospital ER. Our facility made cuts to anticipate the decreased reimbursements we would be receiving. These cuts included a thousand employees losing their jobs. Weekend option employees were all cut to part time. Besides being cut to part time, I also took a $5 per hour pay cut and lost long and short term disability benefits. My premiums for health insurance more than doubled. I went from a $0 deductible plan to a $6,000 deductible.

    Benefit information just came out for next year. My premiums are going up only slightly; however, my deductible is now $9,000. This means that my insurance will not pay a dime until I have paid over 25% of my take home pay. How can anyone say this is affordable?

  19. I pretty much work for myself, so health insurance is an issue.
    FINALLY got it resolved (prior to ACA) with a state run program that helped those with pre – existing conditions get reasonable coverage. The lady wife and I were covered with reasonable copays and deductibles for approx $550/month.
    THEN FedGov Steps in. Suddenly we are paying our premiums to Dept Agriculture (no kidding!) and then – they cancel us, no warning.
    So we look on the exchanges and are in sticker shock – JUST TO BE COMPLIANT (horrible plan) for two of us in this zip code costs more than the mortgage! Effectively our premium costs DOUBLE overnight and NOTHING is covered because the copays and deductibles are so high! The net effect was that we paid $12+K annually in a ‘tax’ that supposedly wasn’t and STILL had to cover our out of pocket costs ourselves – for another $15K total. With $27+K thousand gone from the household budget we couldn’t afford dentists, opticians or mammograms or my annual cardiac check. NOW tell me again – is this how it is supposed to work, because it seems to us as though it is a plan designed to kill off those over 55 who don’t qualify for medicaid. You don’t need ‘death panels’ you just need evil politicians who wish their electorate ill.

  20. I am 34 years old and never been without medical insurance my whole life until now. I have been paying $1200 a month for a family plan thru the exchange this year. We had a newborn baby this year and tried to add her onto the plan. She was initially put on the plan, but I had to send in her birth certificate and social security info once it arrived. When it arrived I scanned it and sent it into the exchange. They said they never received it and had me write more info on the documents and rescan it and sent it. They said they still dont have or cant do anything for me and at 6 months of age they dropped my newborn off the family plan. I am not paying 1200 a month to have one of my kids not covered. I barely use that much in actual medical cost so I stopped paying on my plan for the rest of this year. I am just paying my medical cost out of pocket.

  21. My husband is self employed. We have always had private insurance. When Obamacare opened we were told that we didn’t qualify for subsidies because we qualified for Medicaid. We didn’t want Medicaid. My children see out-of-state specialists, and we needed our private insurance so those would be covered. Why would you force any family that wants to pay for coverage into Medicaid? So, we paid for a plan without the subsidies for one of our children, lost coverage for important docots for other two, spent hours and hours and hours on the phone trying to get everything figured out. Finally our income rose above Medicaid levels, so we start in October 2014 an affordable plan with an unaffordable deductable. We hit our deductable in a few months, but then had to start the deductable over at the new year….not after the start date anniversary which would typically be how things worked in pre-Obamacare days. So, come January 2015 we started our $13,200 out of pocket calculator over. Lovely. Now I just had a baby, and I have to add him. I don’t want to. I’m scared of the process. Something always goes wrong. We are an low/middle income family with children several health issues. We are suppose to be the ones the Obamacare rescues. Instead we have drowned while the incompetent program sucks our last bit of life through the horrible website.

  22. Since obamacare started:
    original premium bcbs nc: $265- p/mo with $2500 deductible
    now: $1400 p/mo with $7800 deductible
    healthcare is more than my mortgage.
    no subsidies and our combined household income is under $60K p/ year.
    Do the math: Total healthcare cost p/year: $24,600-
    Total take-home pay (after taxes) : $40,800
    Net income to pay regular bills: food, mortgage, power, gas, etc.: $16,200
    And this is great Obama better for everyone plan……….. Makes living in mexico with the drug violence look attractive. Get out of America while you still can.

  23. Not ONE doctor I have had over the last 20 years will take ANY health plan on the NY exchange. I am self employed and have a family of 4. We are all, thankfully healthy. This past year was hell working with the exchange and our provider. At this point I just want catastrophic coverage and will pay my doctors with POST tax dollars out of pocket. However this is not an option. The expenses are killing me. I am a democrat but this is so bad even Trump looks good. This must be fixed! One simple solution, do not allow any company or government office to provide coverage. Make everyone have to use the exchange. Than maybe people will see how much they are spending and work to fix it. Having for-profit companies run healthcare is laughable and does not work.

  24. Before Obamacare, my employer offered a very nice health care plan with minimal co-pays and low deductibles. If you needed to go to the doctor or ER, you could afford to go. After ACA was passed, my company announced that they could not risk being hit by the Cadillac tax ( before the date was pushed back several times ) and changed us to a healthcare plan that is basically worthless except for a major illness/accident. My wife and I no longer go to the doctor for health problems and we left one of our children’s smashed finger ( car door accident ) heal on its own without x-rays because we couldn’t afford to go to the doctor or ER. Thankfully, it appears to be healing OK on its own. Obamacare is a total LIE and and in my opinion a criminal act done to most Americans by Obama, Pelosi, Reid, etc. People like my family are never heard about, only the small number of people that Obamacare gave healthcare to. My family is far WORSE OFF with Obamacare, but CNN, ABC, NBC, NY Times, etc. will never talk to me. I will tell the truth that represents the vast majority of Americans.

  25. First time in 11 years of owning small business couldn’t offer employees a PPO. Only could “sort of” afford an HMO, which cost a lot more for a lot less provided. No one was able to keep their doctors! First time in 11 years thinking layoffs likely in 2016. Obamacare nightmare killing small business in Californa.

  26. I am a single parent with two teenagers. We did not have any insurance for years, because I work for a small company that did not offer it and I could not afford it on my own. My daughter has asthma. When it flared up or we needed her inhaler refilled, I could either pay $100+ out of pocket to go to the doctor, or go to the ER, a waste of resources, where it would be covered by Medicaid and I usually didn’t have to pay. Obamacare came along, and I was able to sign my kids up for the children’s plan, but the only insurance plans I could afford for myself didn’t make financial sense. If I was uninsured, my doctor gave me a discount, and if anything catastrophic happened, I would be able to get Medicaid. If I had any insurance at all, I would not qualify for Medicaid. Initially, the children’s plan was $20 per month for both kids, with free primary care visits and low copays for other services. Last October, the children’s plan began charging copays for primary care visits and doubled or tripled the copays for everything else. On Nov 13, I was notified that my son would be dropped from the plan as of the end of the month because he turned 18. (he is a high school senior) My son now needs insurance because he has a health problem that will probably require surgery soon. Obamacare told me that I could not get him on another plan for December because I would have had to complete the application by November 10. I will be charged a penalty for him being uninsured for December even though it was out of my control. I could not get insurance for him without getting insurance for myself as well. I was able to get insurance for the two of us for about the same as the quote as what I had been given for me alone before, which was still outrageously expensive, but a necessary evil. Obamacare informed me that the children’s plan would remain $20 for my daughter alone, as the cost would be the same no matter how many children were insured. So insurance for the three of us at that point cost more than half the amount of our rent, more than my payment on my used car. We were eating a lot of bologna sandwiches. Then I got a $2 per hour raise at my job. This past Friday, I was notified that because I am no longer below the poverty level, my daughter’s insurance will jump from $20 per month to $298 per month starting April 1. An $80 per month increase in income results in a $278 per month change in premium. I called the Healthcare Marketplace, who said that because open enrollment is over for the year, unless the children’s plan drops her comletely, I can’t move my daughter to another plan, no matter how much hers goes up. I can’t afford insurance for all three of us. It would be more than our rent. Do I quit my job and go on welfare, even though I am perfectly capable of working, because it is the only way to get medical care for my children? Am I supposed to become homeless and live in my car so I can pay for insurance? Should I find some drifter and have a fatherless baby or two so I am back below the poverty line and qualify for additional assistance? The working people struggling to make something of themselves are the ones being financially ruined by Obamacare.

  27. I am now paying 20% of my gross pay for insurance that covers NOTHING until I kick in a deductible of another 20% of my GROSS pay. I currently need knee surgery desperately, but am unable to get it because I do not have the 5k to “prepay”. Every day I do more damage to my knee. It has gotten to the point where I have difficulty walking, but for any aid, the count your gross pay, disregarding the fact that between ss, income, state and insurance deductions, I actually see less than half of my gross pay. What good is insurance if it covers nothing?

  28. April 5, 2015 – I am 50yr – I had insurance through my job. Hurt my self(not at work). Went to doctor. Sent ASAP to spine surgeon. Turns out I have a genetic spine disorder. It was pretty bad. Effective the last day of April my insurance cancels…my company has fired me. I get with BCBSTX (THE BEST) before it cancels, conference with healthcare.gov and the transition goes off without a hitch. Effective May 1, my new policy (exact same plan as before) starts and surgery is scheduled for June 3. I have a multi-level cervical fusion, everything above C6. I have a lot of nerve damage from my condition so we are sure that this is only the first step. 4 days in the hospital due to complications. Go home. Sit. Do NOTHING for 12 weeks (which would be first week of September) then we will see if I’m ready to start PT.
    So, here I sit at the beginning of March 2016: Have never been to PT or back to Dr. since surgery. PAINPAINPAIN! Everyday. Emotionally and mentally on the edge. And no prospects on how to move forward. I can’t even get help for the severe depression I am now well over my head in! THANK OBAMACARE!

  29. I received Obamacare on my Temporary position back in November. My plan was a whopping $5000 deductible where I still had to pay full cost for a Doctor’s visit. Around $140 was garnished from my from my paycheck each month for ACA. What really irked me was I had to pay nearly $100/month out-of-pocket on top of my garnished wages!

    I found it more feasible not having Obamacare, so I withdrew from the plan. Yes, I realize I may have to pay a fine next tax season, but I’m praying God will Bless me with a better job with company’s health insurance.

  30. Mid-West Madness

    Under mandated healthcare we had to bail off my husband’s company plan in 2015 (United Health Care) and find our own (Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield), as his company’s plans skyrocketed under ObamaCare. However, premiums under the new BCBS plan have already skyrocketed in 2016, as have out-of-pocket expenses and co-pays. At the same time coverage went from 80%/20% to 70%/30% on procedures.

    And NOW Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield no longer even sends out a monthly bill! Instead, halfway through the coverage cycle we get a notice declaring that we’re “in danger of losing our coverage” because the payment is late. One manager there told me they had switched to a new system in January and many people are no longer receiving their monthly bills. It’s now been three months of this latest insanity.

  31. 2 Comments….. My rates have jumped 65% in 18 months. My daughter signed up for Obama Care. He insurance company went out of business. Her new insurance is twice what it was. Where is my $2,500 yearly savings?

  32. I believe that Obamacare killed my wife. Hospitals and doctors have adjusted to Obamacare by reorganizing their processes and approach to patient care in order to manage the cost implications of Obamacare. The primary adjustment is a team-based approach to patient care with the objective to contain the cost within the constraints proposed by the insurance companies. No one is in charge; you are passed from doctor-to-doctor, nurse-to-nurse, and team-to-team. At each pass, your repeat your history, and no one is in charge of managing to achieve a positive patient outcome. My wife had routine surgery, and the initial claim was complete success. She was shuffled out of the hospital in two days, and she bled to death in three. The hospital met the demands of the insurance company, but my wife is dead. And after the failure, I did not even know who to talk to about what happened. After research, interviewing, and refection, I can’t blame the outcome on the doctors or the hospital. They are overwhelmed by the pressures placed on them by the government and the insurance companies. They are in the crisis mode; trying to survive the negative incentives imposed by Obamacare. Politicians claim success with Obamacare, but those claims are pure propaganda. In the meantime the politicians and the bureaucrats are destroying our healthcare system.

  33. My non-ACA compliant health insurance plan which covered my family for years was forced to terminate Jan 1,2016. Exchange plans were more than triple the premium and more than double out of pocket costs ($1200 a month instead of $400 – and for a crummy plan). We don’t make a lot of money, $80k a year for a family of 6. But don’t qualify for Medicaid – “maybe” a $200 tax credit to subsidize cost (that math doesn’t work) – which I’ve seen many people have to pay back because what they were advised they would get and what they got was not the same, and if you take an advance on a tax credit you don’t get, you have to pay it back. (I’m an accountant and could tell many horror stories). I have a child with a medical condition that has required a lot of specialists just to figure out what is going on. I have been insured my whole life until now. Now thanks to ACA, I have to figure out how we’re going to pay $50k or more in medical bills. I know more people like myself who have become uninsured BECAUSE of ACA than people who have gained coverage.

  34. What value does marketplace.gov bring to the market for the segment of the population that does not receive a subsidy? And even if you do receive a subsidy, their only value is the facilitation of the tax credit. It is so confusing to wonder what value they have after the tax credit.

    They hide under a cloak of policy and procedure and can make no decisions on a human or dynamic level. As a previous health insurance agent I am shocked at the incompetence. I can not imagine telling a client that had coverage that they were responsible for a policy with having other coverage in place and not paying the company.

    Keeping the policy in effect with a 90 day grace period and not allowing retro-active cancellations for any reason except a natural disaster seems ridiculous. They should accept the responsibility and review the situation dynamically.

    End of the saga, I am responsible for having a huge tax liability and having to health insurance plans paid for. What an absolute disaster the Affordable Care Act. My families health plan price has doubled.

    Government run health insurance would be a disaster. Their middle man healthcare.gov is simply awful. Does anyone else think that ACA is better than private insurance market?

    1. Ohio is the ultimate Obamacare fail. I am self-employed and thus must purchase a private plan for my family, which we purchased through the exchange at a monthly unsubsidized premium of $1895.65, with a $7,500 deductible. InHealth Ohio went bankrupt and is now being run by the Government, thus we have 60 days to find another “compliant” plan or now face the tax penalty because the State of Ohio limits total liability to $500k per plan, rather than no limit per Obamacare.
      Thus in our situation where we had a surgery this year and met our out of pocket maximum early so the insurance was just starting to pay out – we will end up paying nearly $24k in premiums, the full 7500 deductible/OOP max, and have the privilege of paying a tax penalty for being non-compliant using the “Obamacare” plan.
      The alternative is, having already paid nearly 20k in insurance and deductibles, start all over again and pay another 20-30k for another plan for the rest of the year.
      The other alternative is just go without, gamble that the penalty and actual costs will be less than being in any system.

      1. I have the same issue Dave, I had a craniotomy to remove a brain tumor in January, the only “silverlining” was that my insurance deductible would be met for the remaining 11 months of the year. My agent believes explicitly that there is no way InHealth will be able to pay out for their customer’s claims through December, so instead of rolling the dice and hoping my bills will be paid, I now have to obtain a new plan and pay my deductible all over again. With two more MRI’s scheduled this year, and therapies and tests and doctors appointments, to say the least, I am not happy. Best of luck to you, Dave! And to the rest of us in Ohio!

  35. We were on a ppo last year and was in the process of a continuing to get my husband’s heart condition under control. When the BCBSTX changed all of their insurance policies on Obama Care into hmo. The doctor had just a few months prior taken him off a heart medicince to see if he could handle it. When picking out the insurance I was mainly searching
    for a policy that had this heart doctor in it to continue with my husband’s heart treatment. In an email I was assured by BCBSTX that this doctor was in our network. When we went
    to make the appointment through the preferred doctor we were told at that time that our doctor was not in the network. So even though we were paying the 700 cost of the insurance
    we went ahead and made the visits with cash. During that time my husband’s heart started failing and sent him into afib. The doctor wanted to immediately get him in and shock
    him out of it but found out that he was not on our plan. All he could do was put him back on the heart pill and send us on our way. We found a doctor that was in the network
    and started going to him. During this we were being told that if the card has the letters ver before the member number that this is a mark to let everyone know that this is Obama Care
    and not to take it. So we are having a world of trouble over this. The doctor takes it but the hospitals do not. My husband is still in afib and we are just now 1 month later being told
    they will call us when they find somewhere they can do the shock procedure. I know nothing can be done but wanted to share my story.

  36. We pay $2,400 monthly, but keep jumping on as needed. We are forced to gamble and forced to cheat! This ay of doing healthcare is horrific; we know obamacare will fail, the sooner the better as 2400 for five is astronomical as we were paying about 800 prior.

  37. January 1, 2016 my private insurance went up 60%. Now as of January 1, 2017 the company I am with in Minnesota will be cancelling all individual and family policies carried thru and agent or broker. What happened to the Presidents famous words: ” IF YOU LIKE YOUR CURRENT POLICY YOU CAN KEEP IT……..Should have said if you like your current policy you’re going to get thrown in front of the bus. After carrying health insurance all of my adult life and being responsible in doing my part…….this is what I get. America the land of the free and home of the ‘ENTITLED….The more irresponsible you are in America the better off you are. Now at 55 I am forced to be without good insurance because of the Affordable Care Act………


    I am older than my wife, so am headed to Medicare next month. I had been paying $1369 a month for a $2700 deductible policy. (A 30% increase in premium from last year.) We met the deductible in June, so insurance just started paying.

    In order to switch to Medicare, I had to cancel the existing policy on the Maryland exchange. There was no way to cancel ME and leave my WIFE have a policy. Then, she has to reapply for new insurance and the deductible starts over again.

    Basically, we just paid $ 12321 plus the $2700 deductible. for about $500 dollars worth of insurance coverage. Tried to talk to the Maryland exchange person (after a series of prompts and a 20 minute wait) but there is nothing they can do but to cancel the policy. The insurance carrier won’t talk to me as I purchased through the exchange.

  39. I am a single sole supporting mother of 2 young children. I made $51,000 last year and had to pay a penalty because I could not afford the “affordable care”.

  40. I also bought into the ‘if you like your health insurance, you can keep it’. My husband and I are both self-employed. We figured ACA would not be an issue for us, but we were wrong. Our insurance was rates were simply raised the first year and then cancelled the second year and then we had to take a look at Obamacare.

    We chose to opt out of Obamacare. The premiums plus deductible were very pricey and we were only offered $1.00, yes you read the right, A DOLLAR, in a tax credit/subsidy. I chose to cover my family on Christian Health Care coverage (Medi-share). It is not a bad option. The costs are more reasonable and it will do for now.

    We use the Community Health Clinic when we need to and really try to avoid trips to the doctor. We scrutinize every cost. (We still can’t justify buying the annual EpiPen for our son which costs $600. Our tax money is going to pay for everyone else’s healthcare but our own. Thanks everyone for using my tax dollars for your needs at the expense of not meeting my own!)

    I DID have to cover my college daughter on ACA since I could not be sure she would follow the rules Medishare requires of their members. When I signed her up for ACA, I had to submit her through the KanCare application process even though I knew we would not qualify. It took a couple of weeks to get that cleared up.

    The actual ACA website process is annoying. All these questions about everyone else besides my daughter. People who were not going to be covered. It kept asking me about my younger children…how much did the make? Um..nothing they are 10 and 7.

    Any how, here we are a few years later and the premium has doubled. The first year it was $76, $114 the second and today the cheapest for her is $143. Ok..well subtract that dollar in a credit I get. According to the government, I am rich. I am going to go real far on that dollar.

    Actually I am not rich. I work hard so does my husband. We have fluctuating incomes. We have to self-fund our retirements, pay for medical insurance and provide a secure home life for our 3 kids.

    When I wrote the White House after having my insurance canceled that first year, here is a snippet of what “Obama” said in 2014:

    “Your email speaks to the fact that we have more to do, and I want you to know I am listening.”

    “Again, I appreciate hearing from you, and I am going to keep fighting to improve the Affordable Care Act and make sure it works for everyone.


    Barack Obama”

    Yes, I see he was listening so very carefully. All these years later and I still get a dollar tax credit.

  41. One gets the feeling that Obamacare was deliberately made to be so convoluted in order to force legislators to scrap it all, and go for a single-payer healthcare system.

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