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On health insurance (long post as well)

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by FIMCO-MEISTER, Aug 12, 2007.


    Messages: 18,668

    The latest consumer report magazine is focusing on health care insurance. I'm curious as to what is going on in the lives of the forum on this issue. I have a Health Savings Account that eats up 5280.00 a year in tax exempt saving plus I pay a monthly premium of 890.00/month. (Includes daughter as well) It started out at 400something 11 years ago. My deductible is the same as my tax exempt savings 5280.00. After I reach that point they pay 100% of my medical costs and they also negotiate with doctors and pharmacy for much reduced rates. I've only exceeded my deductible twice and that was in 2003-2004 when I ran up over 100,000 in medical expenses due to my battle with West Nile Virus. When I needed them they came through with flying colors and approved without delay every medical procedure the doctors wanted to use. Including at home nurse care. I will never be without health care. I pay it as my first bill of the month.
    What is your health care insurance situation?
    Would you support a Govt run health care program?
    The number of uninsured in this country is astounding. Even if you have insurance the out of pocket expense may break you combined with the loss of work income. I'm a free market person and see health care as a privilege not a right. But when a needed service slowly becomes something only the upper class can afford it has to be reevaluated in a big way.
  2. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,085

    I pay BCBS something like $580 a month for my wife, our 11 month old, & myself. We looked at a few other plans out there, but the maternity part is what kept us where we are. We've had the same plan for 4 years now.

    Messages: 18,668

    To further this discussion are you using an HMO or PPO? How old are you? I'm guessing early 30s. How much out of pocket before coverage kicks in?
  4. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 50,523

    I thought HMO meant Have More Oatmeal
  5. bobw

    bobw LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 807

    Having lived in both Texas and in Canada... there really isn't that much difference in health care, if you have decent insurance.

    Under a government insurance plan, there are lots of little limitations that happen. Chronic hospital bed shortages and lack of trained personnel are the biggest issues. A great number of MDs and RNs get their training and head south where they get paid better... Also, the gov't is very slow to approve new treatment methods, etc; they do worry about cost a LOT. Also... we do pay for insurance through our taxes; when I was living in the US, I was amazed at how little Uncle Sammy took from me....

    I wouldn't want to be in the USA without decent medical insurance. The thought of getting stuck with a huge bill is terrifying. Turning health care into a "for profit" enterprise results in some pretty nasty situations. The $300 aspirin is the classic example.... they charge that because honest, uninsured people will pay their bills... by charging that much, they make up for all the people that don't pay their bills. A very unfair system....

    Messages: 18,668

    As I suspected this is a grooooooan conversation. i suspect the average buyer of Health Ins is clueless as to what they will be provided until a crisis occurs and they suddenly are squabbling with insurance payments while trying to deal with a health issue.

    Messages: 18,668

    Would the Canadian situation improve if the US was no longer an option for Doctors to run south and make more money? If you are trapped in a quasi business/govt system I'm not sure the situation ever improves. i see competition in the laser eye surgery which is sort of outside the whole mess. My attitude is make it totally free enterprise or require 100% enrollment. Get the young in the system to spread the costs multigenerational.
  8. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,794

    When my wife was pregnant with our first child, I could not afford insurance. I quit my job, and got a union job stocking in a grocery store from 11pm to 7 am. This is before I started doing irrigation.

    The union insurance covered the pregnancy 100%.

    About 8 months in, I got a job with an irrigation company, and I was working both jobs, 11pm - 7am then 9am to 5pm...then a few hours of sleep.

    I could only do that for a month. I decided I had to choose, and I chose irrigation and didn't look back.

    We went without insurance the entire time but we were lucky, and had no major health issues. Now that I'm a software developer, I have insurance, but it still costs me $400 a month for full coverage, Health, Vision, Dental, and only a $500 deductible. They rest of the difference is picked up by my employer.

    Messages: 18,668

    is it an HMO or PPO? Who with and how would you rate it.
  10. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,794

    Its a HMO through Aetna.

    I haven't really had a chance to put them to the test yet. So far, they have honored most of the claims for my wifes pregnancy (They denied on a few labs, so my total out of pocket cost is coming close to the deductible amount now).

    I used them for some dental work, and they were fine (80% coverage on fillings).

    Thats all I have needed so far. Something amusing is that they have a strange life insurance policy on me as well. If I die, they will pay my wife/daughter 4.5x my annual salary in a lump sum. This cost me less than $10 a month, so I opted in.

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