There’s a bunch of nonsense circulating on the web claiming the Obama Administration has said the average family premium under Obamacare will be $20,000 in 2016.
a) unable to read and understand basic English; and/or
b) quite willing to distort, mis-inform, slant and obfuscate.
The kerfuffle began with a lengthy IRS memo released last week. [opens pdf] Ideologues took one sentence (page 70, third paragraph) out of the document and claimed it said something which it absolutely did NOT.
The nut-o-sphere mis-read the IRS’ statement and interpreted an example as the IRS’ estimate of cost.
IT IS NOT.
If you read the para at the beginning of the relevant section, it reads “The following examples illustrate the provisions of this section.” Note the use of the words “example” and “illustrate”.
In fact, no one knows what the premium for a bronze-level plan for a family of 5 will be in 2016.
Now that we’ve thrown out that trash, let’s talk about family premiums, shall we?
First, let’s be precise about definitions. Employers’ costs are almost always lower than individual coverage, so be precise when talking about costs – are they for individual coverage, Medicaid, or employer-based plans.
Second, most individuals/families with incomes below 400% of the Federal Poverty Level will have a subsidy so their “cost” on the individual (or small employer” market will be less than the “list price.”
Third, the cost for a medium cost area is about $19,138 for a family of four for the Silver plan with no subsidy. If you make $80 grand, your cost – after the subsidy – is $11,528.
Fourth, my family – with four covered, all of us healthy, and no subsidy now or later, is paying $756 in premiums for a policy with an $11,900 deductible TODAY. That’s $20,972 TODAY. I can’t wait for Obamacare, as our costs will go DOWN and coverage vastly improve if the IRS’ figures are correct.
The best resource for calculating cost is the Kaiser Foundation’s calculator –
Unfortunately this is yet another example of ideologues taking statements out of context to advance their own agenda. Of course I didn’t read news of this revelation about Obamacare in the credible press; they ignored it because it isn’t a story. There is no story here. Unless it is about distortions for political gain.
This first came to light (for me) in the Workers’ Comp Advisory Group’s forum; not sure why it was there.