Obamacare is a massive overhaul to our nation’s healthcare system, and the consequences won’t all be positive. Fox News has led the charge at ferreting out people who will lose thousands of dollars and switch to a less desirable health care plan because of Obamacare. Or at least that’s the claim: many of these people on further investigation would do as well or better under Obamacare.
The Wall St. Journal seems to have gotten in on this game: they published an op-ed by one Edie Sundby, a stage IV gallbladder cancer patient titled "I Am One of ObamaCares Losers"
“My choice is to get coverage through the government health exchange and lose access to my cancer doctors, or pay much more for insurance outside the exchange (the quotes average 40% to 50% more) for the privilege of starting over with an unfamiliar insurance company and impaired benefits,” Sundby writes.
ThinkProgress investigated Sundby’s case, and found that there may be hope for the elderly cancer fighter. After making a number of assumptions that mostly lean in favor of her current plan over what Obamacare will cost her, they come up with these numbers for her current plan:
PACIFIC CARE PPO (CATASTROPHIC POLICY): $2,186 monthly premium ($26,241/year). $3,000 deductible. 20% co-insurance for in-network (50% out-of-network) $8,000 in-network max. (Estimated annual cost: $37,241)
And her Obamacare plan (ThinkProgress selected the most expensive one available):
BLUE OF CALIFORNIA ULTIMATE PPO: $1,919 monthly premium ($23,028/year). $0 deductible. $8,000 in-network-max (50% co-insurance for non-participating provider). (Estimated annual cost: around $31,028)
ThinkProgress notes that the Obamacare plan will likely come with added protections and cover more procedures. They do concede that in Sundby’s case, she may have to incur out-of-network costs if she wants to continue seeing both of her doctors (which are not covered under the same plan).
Obamacare could use some adjustments, but the quest of the right-wing media to find true Obamacare losers keeps coming up empty. It’s unfortunate that Sundby won’t be able to continue using the health insurance that she likes, but she may find that Obamacare isn’t so bad for her after all.