Health Insurance: The Eternal Battle
When I got a new job, the company was too small to offer a group health insurance plan. They handled this by asking me to get an individual plan that they would reimburse me for. I chose a good plan that kept me happy. The premium was $412 per month.
I only worked for this small company for a few months. When they laid me off, I was once again in a pickle about what to do about my insurance. I remembered the Medical Security Plan and reapplied. This time I was accepted.
I was able to stay on the Medical Security Plan for six months. This was a glorious time for me and my health insurance. After my reimbursement, I was paying around $83 per month for fantastic coverage. I was able to see my therapist, chiropractor, and nutritionist without any problems. My visits to the gynecologist and primary care doctors cost me only a $15 co-pay. This level of coverage pleased me to no end.
This went on until I got a new, full-time job. My eligibility for the Medical Security Plan was crushed.
My new era of health insurance.
Right now, I miss the glory days of the Medical Security Plan. I work full-time and am eligible for my employer’s health insurance program. This sounds like the answer to my problems, but has two huge issues. The first is that the plan offered is terrible. The second is that I have to meet certain quotas and hour requirements to stay on their plan. If I drop below these quotas and requirements, I get kicked off and become uninsured again. This is a new system for me; I have never been insured under such strict terms before.
I am currently fighting to keep myself insured. My plan has many $50 co-pays and a high deductible. Only basic medical needs are covered. I can no longer go to the chiropractor or nutritionist. My therapist and psychiatrist are considered “out of network.” The plan is highly confusing and the insurance company wants me to change many of my doctors.
I anticipate that my employer will soon kick me off of this plan. Next month, my work hours will change. It will be much more difficult for me to meet their quotas and I am not sure I can do it.
I am trying to figure out what I will do when this happens. I am investigating becoming part of a group health insurance plan that covers freelance writers. This sounds like a great idea, but my sleuthing so far has revealed that this only works well if you are a resident of the state of New York. My main option is to get a new, individual plan. I could go back to the type of plan I had when I was reimbursed through the Medical Security Plan. However, the plan I had is no longer offered and similar coverage would run me around $450 per month, post-tax. I have found a plan that would cover most of my basic needs for $313 per month, but that is still a large number. I make little money right now and $313 is almost a week’s paycheck for me. I am eligible for lower income subsidized insurance through the state, but feel strange about applying for it.
When, and if, I get kicked off my employer’s health insurance I will figure out what to do. Until then, I will continue with my confusing, high co-pay plan. Keeping yourself properly insured should not be as excessively difficult as it is. The whole issue makes me a little ill. Good health care should be a right, not a privilege.
Goldstein, S. (2013). Health Insurance: The Eternal Battle. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 9, 2016, from http://psychcentral.com/lib/health-insurance-the-eternal-battle/