Obamacare Annual Enrollment – Should I Care?

ObamaCare enrollment started November 15th.  The question is, who should care?  Health Care site 2014

ObamaCare is mainly for people and small groups who purchase their own health insurance.  If you are uninsured and do not have an employer-sponsored health plan, Medicare, or Medicaid, ObamaCare is for you.

But, the fact is that most people will never apply for ObamaCare.

Forty-Eight (48%) percent of people in the US have employer-sponsored health insurance. Medicare, government health insurance for the elderly, covers another 15 percent of the US population. Medicaid, government health insurance for the poor, covers an additional 15 percent. Other government health insurance programs cover 2 percent of the population. Another 5 percent of the population is covered by non-group plans. So, only 15 percent of the US population is currently uninsured. Therefore, most people will never need the insurance plans created as a result of ObamaCare.

Often, people with Medicare are confused about the Medicare enrollment period v. the ObamaCare enrollment period.

The Medicare enrollment period is from October 15 to December 7, 2014.  This enrollment period is different than ObamaCare.  If you have Medicare, remember that the ObamaCare enrollment period does not affect Medicare.  Also, if you have Medicare Advantage, you do not need to do anything related to ObamaCare.  Medicare Advantage is not the same as ObamaCare.

The cost of coverage for an ObamaCare health plan will vary widely depending on three major factors: your age, your income and where you live. ObamaCare allows health insurance companies to charge significantly more for an older shopper compared to a young shopper. For example, a health plan for a 58-year-old can cost three times more then the same health plan for a 23-year-old. The reason for this is that the health insurance company expects to pay far more for the 58-year-old’s healthcare then for a young, healthy 23-year-old. It’s also true that in certain parts of the country healthcare costs more than in other parts of the country. Additionally, for people who earn less than four times the poverty level (about $45,000 for an individual or $96,000 for a family of 4), they will be entitled to subsidies, which may pay for the entire cost of the monthly premium.

Also, if you do not have health insurance you will have to pay a penalty.  So, if you are uninsured, check out  healthcare.gov and enroll in your plan of choice. You  have until February 15, 2015 to apply.



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