Again, today's deadline day to get insurance, if you don't already have it … Longtime commenter Cos holds forth on his experience with the new health care “products”, and makes an important clarification:
Actually, for truly “lower income” folks, the plans we have under Commonwealth Care are excellent. It's the best health insurance I've ever had, the easiest to use, and I dread my upcoming switch back to an employer-sponsored or similar other plan.
It's only when you get above 300% of poverty that the insurance available starts to be a problem. For a single person, that's about $31,000/year. So it's the lower-middle income people that will have a problem getting health insurance.
Note, however, that the Connector can designate a window where based on your income, no “afforable” plan is available, and so you don't get penalized for not buying one. I believe the window for single people is currently from the Commonwealth Care cutoff up to about $40,000/year (and there's a proportionally equivalent window for people in other status, like couples or parents, above whatever their 300% of poverty is).
The great success of the new health care law is the great health insurance we now offer to the poor, the broke, and the low-income residents of the state.
One of the failures, so far, is that it does nothing for people in that window. But at least it doesn't penalize them, and a lot of people don't seem to realize that.
Above the window, you can theoretically afford one of the plans available. Is that really true for people just barely above the window? That I don't know. Anyone here in that situation? (for example, a single person living alone earning about $41,000/year)
Again, again, again, the easy, popular part is just subsidizing people's insurance. (The SCHIP battle has illustrated the same thing.) It's quite palatable, politically; more so than enforcing the mandate, which, let's remember, was Mitt's “conservative” idea.
By the way, Globe writer Alice Dembner wants your stories:
HEALTH INSURANCE?How is your boss responding to the new health insurance law? Is he giving you coverage for the first time? Did she cut your hours to avoid providing coverage? Please share your story with reporter Alice Dembner at Dembner@globe.com.