FAIL: Obamacare Plans Leave Many Under Insured

There is no question that Obamacare is unconstitutional since the enumerated powers of the federal government does not include providing health care insurance, mandating anyone purchase health care insurance or power over the health care economy, including providing health care to the general public. Until the states nullify this atrocity, since all Congress talks about is “reform” of Obamacare, Americans are stuck with this unconstitutional elephant. Since before its implementation, Americans have been enlightened to “unintended” consequences of this legislation; but, the word out of Washington is America will be better off and will come to “love” Obamacare.

For the millions of individuals who support Obamacare thinking they will have “free” health care, they miss the point that it is not health care they are getting but health care insurance which neither guarantees care or payment. They ignore the fact their “free” premiums are being paid for by someone else through the shuffling of cost onto individuals who make more money. Just as veterinarians will suffer increased costs because of using some of the same equipment on animals as is used on humans as an unintended consequence, many individuals will suffer becoming “underinsured” placing them at risk of increasing debt.

According to CNS news:

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For working people making modest wages and struggling with high medical bills from chronic disease, President Barack Obama’s health care plan sounds like long-awaited relief. But the promise could go unfulfilled.

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It’s true that patients with cancer and difficult conditions such as multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s disease will be able to get insurance and financial help with monthly premiums.

But their annual out-of-pocket costs could still be so high they’ll have trouble staying out of debt.

You couldn’t call them uninsured any longer. You might say they’re “underinsured.”

According to Brian Rosen, a senior Vice President of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, this presents a challenge for cancer patients, indicating the need for a closure of the gap for Obamacare to fulfill its full intention.

The American Cancer Society Cancer Network seems to echo the same sentiment. According to its spokesman, Steven Weiss, “Cost may still be an issue for those in need of the most care” which “makes it critically important for patients looking at premiums to also consider out-of-pocket costs when choosing a plan.”

Out-of-pocket costs related to health care insurance include the annual deductible as well as any co-payments or cost-sharing. The annual deductible is the amount of money paid out-of-pocket before the insurance starts paying.

The following is an example provided by CNS regarding how individuals may end up being “underinsured.”

Take someone under 65 with no access to health insurance on the job and making $24,000 a year — about what many service jobs pay.

Under the health care law, that person’s premiums would be capped below 7 percent of his income, about $130 a month. A stretch on a tight budget, yet doable.

But if he gets really sick or has an accident, his out-of-pocket expenses could go as high as $5,200 a year in a worst-case scenario. That’s even with additional financial subsidies that the law provides people with modest incomes and high out-of-pocket costs.

The $5,200 would be more than 20 percent of the person’s income, well above a common threshold for being underinsured.

Granted, this is considering optimal operation of the unconstitutional Obamacare. The exchange system has been riddled with problems in applying subsidies appropriately, the ability to calculate premiums, the choice of plans individuals can access, and the ability of individuals to submit premium payments.

Caroline Pearson, who tracks the health care overhaul for Avalere Health, a market research and consulting firm, states, “Chronically ill people are likely to be underinsured and face extremely high out-of-pocket costs. While the subsidies help, there still may be problems for some populations.”

Is this truly another “unintended” consequence?

Here is how Obamacare is breaking down. From CNS news:

Under the law, insurance companies competing in new online markets like can offer four levels of coverage.

All plans cover the same benefits; the difference is in financial protection. A bronze plan covers 60 percent of expected costs, silver covers 70 percent, gold covers 80 percent, and platinum covers 90 percent.

Bronze plans have the lowest premiums but provide less insurance. Gold plans are the closest to employer-provided coverage. Indeed, members of Congress and staffers who will now get their coverage through the health care law have been steered to gold plans.

Silver, however, is the standard for most consumers. The law’s tax credits to help with premiums are keyed to a benchmark silver plan in each geographical area. And the law’s subsidies to help with out-of-pocket costs are only available to people who get a silver plan.

The average annual deductible for a silver plan is $2,567, making it double what workers covered through employer-provided plans currently pay. Some silver plans were found to have high cost-sharing requirements for prescription drugs, specifically “specialty drugs” used to treat some intractable or “chronic” conditions. “Some plans may offer limited relief by covering certain services before a patient has met their annual deductible,” which may include primary care, some prescription medication and routine care for chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure and diabetes. However, none of this may help those individuals with high cost illnesses. The chronically ill will still be exposed to “significant financial challenges.”

The solution to this problem is for those with chronic illnesses to purchase platinum or gold plans. The rationale is to pay higher premiums in order to reduce exposure to out-of-pocket costs.

While this rationale sounds good, there will be individuals with serious chronic illnesses who cannot afford these platinum and gold plans. Health care insurance is to help diminish medical debt, not eliminate it; however, one must be able to afford the premiums and associated out-of-pocket costs.

Even the Obama administration spokeswoman, Joanne Peters, indicates the comparison between the previous system and the current system is “night and day,” but insurers can no longer refuse coverage to those with pre-existing conditions, and “because the new plans cap out-of-pocket costs.” Well, that explains everything – hardly.

Ron Pollack, one of the Obamacare law’s leading advocates and executive director of Families USA, states, “If the question is, will some people find that coverage and care remain unaffordable, the answer is yes. There will be some people who feel that way. The overwhelming majority will be far better off, even if what they have is not perfect.”

These statements by Pollack are frankly insulting when considering the PR sale of Obamacare was affordable health insurance for all. On top of that, Pollack’s statement is an example of the “mob rule” thinking: the majority is better off even if it’s not perfect. This is the principle of democracy; this is what Democrats alone forced on the American public. The majority of Americans may be better off walking on their hands, but there are some that would rather use their feet.

Not too long ago, Democrats and Obama himself were trying to distance themselves from this train-wreck that as of now seems endless.

Bottom line, none of this is about health care insurance or health care. It’s about controlling one sixth of the US economy, controlling the American public, and redistributing wealth. This is the infamous “hope and change” rhetoric in action – throw out the Constitution and fly by the seat of your pants.

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