Report: Local health insurance policy holders may not get to keep plan, after all

By Jim McCabe on October 31 at 6:24am

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Criticism of the implementation of the Affordable Care Act has intensified with a new report detailing how it will affect those with existing insurance policies.

NBC News says 50 to 75 percent of the 14 million individuals who purchase their own health insurance will have their policies cancelled because of failure to meet standards mandated by the new law.

The report cites sources involved with the Affordable Care Act that say despite President Obama promising that if you like your policy, you can keep it, his administration knew that many would receive cancellation notices.

Chapin resident Rosie Baker is one of the millions who have already received such a letter. She says her policy will be terminated at the end of this year. Baker says she had no problems with her existing policy.

“It was insurance that I could afford and I was comfortable about what was covered, what wasn’t covered,” she says. “I know it was limited-benefit insurance, but it was what I chose to have and purchased on my own. [The cancellation] was just really frustrating.”

A consultant that works for health industry firms stated in the NBC News report that the number of those that will have to purchase a pricier package of benefits to meet the health care law requirements could actually be as high as 80 percent.

Baker says among the coverage options she’ll have to purchase that she won’t need in a new plan is maternity coverage. She’s concerned about the potential sticker shock.

“Since I’ve went from full-time to part-time, I don’t have near the income that I did, so I’m afraid it’s going to be something much more expensive, and I just don’t know how I’m going to do,” says Baker.

“I’m going to do some looking around and some pricing of each individual insurance that I can talk to, and see if I can find something close to what I need.”

Baker says she refuses to purchase insurance through the new healthcare.gov website, citing the reported glitches associated with the online healthcare exchange.

The White House says while many in the individual market will lose their current coverage, policyholders will be offered better coverage in its place and many will receive tax subsidies that would offset any increased costs.