Consumers have expressed concern over their ability to afford to use the coverage they’ve purchased.
Residents of Alabama have been voicing frustrations over an upcoming increase to the deductibles they pay out of their own pockets for health insurance they’ve purchased under the requirements of the Affordable Care Act.
They have stated that the combination of higher premiums and deductibles are making coverage less affordable.
The premiums being paid for health insurance in Alabama increased by an average of 28.3 percent over the last year. This was tough on many individuals and families, but the New York Times has now reported that those more expensive policies are being rendered “all but useless” following a spike in their deductibles, as well. What’s worse is that it has been predicted that this trend is only going to continue.
It is likely to become more expensive not only to obtain health insurance but also to be able to use it.
Those who will be hardest hit by these changes in the cost of insurance coverage are low-and middle-income families. The added costs that must be paid out-of-pocket are placing a greater distance between health care and affordability.
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Unfortunately, this situation looks even more dire when considering the reduction in options that are being faced by consumers in many states. There have been several insurers that have chosen to either scale back the number of offerings they had over the insurance exchanges or to withdraw altogether. The decrease in options and competition could mean that the price of coverage will only continue its increasing path until something changes.
It’s important to note that rising premiums, on their own, doesn’t necessarily mean that the health insurance market is going sour. Moreover, there are many people who do prefer high-deductible policies in order to be able to keep their premiums under control. However, it is the combination of these two factors and the lack of alternative options that has people worrying about the affordability of the health plans they’re required to carry under the Affordable Care Act and to be able to obtain the medical care they need.