Shop Til You Drop at the Healthcare Marketplace – Part One

By on November 20, 2013

I love to shop. I consider hunting for the best bargains a hobby – no matter if it is for a new dress, electronics, or groceries. I truly enjoy reading reviews and researching deals.

So, when I heard that I would finally have more affordable and beneficial choices in health insurance I got a little excited.

The Affordable Health Care Act sounded brilliant to me. I am a thirty-year-old self-employed woman who pays for her health insurance privately. I’ve had my current plan for 3 years now. Other than an annoying case of GERD I’m a healthy young woman. It took a lot of time on the phone and energy in order to find an affordable plan.

shopping_healthcare_sm-1024x1006My current plan is through Coventry Health America – I pay $210 a month and have a $3,500 deductible. The one prescription I’d need for my GERD would cost me $120 a month out of pocket – so I go with out and suffer the consequences. I visit the doctor as little as I need and avoid seeing any specialists. The last time I visited a specialist and received treatment was over a year ago when I had a dermatologist remove a couple of scary looking moles. This much needed preventive care procedure cost me $380 out of pocket. So yes, although to anyone with a serious illness my costs were pretty low, but high enough to be a strain on my budget.

I always feel hidden in the dark about what things will cost me, and they are always a surprise. No matter how many times I read it over, my plan description reads like a foreign language to me. I just find it all so confusing and overwhelming.

I couldn’t wait for the system to be easy and simple. As I read more and more about Obamacare I eagerly awaited a time when I’d receive a letter in the mail from my current healthcare provider explaining what my next steps were. I searched the Internet in vain for an article that would be something like “healthcare for dummies”.

But, everything I found was the opposite of transparent. Mostly there are just debates and complaints. I wanted a clear, to the point explanation on what this plan would mean for me. I recently got married and my husband and I are discussing our options, our budget, and our ideal time to start a family. There could not be a better time to reexamine what type of health insurance I want to have.

So, I waited in anticipation for October 1.

Stay tuned for Part 2!

About Katie Walsh MacDonald

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