healthcare.gov low monthly prices leave insureds open to financial and healthcare disaster, experts say
According to The Department of Health and Human Services, returning customers to HealthCare.gov can save if they switch to the lowest-cost plan within their coverage level. But experts say the monthly premium is misleading. They say quality and coverage of health plans makes exchange-based health insurance “a financial trap” since high deductibles, co-pays and limits on choices of providers can expose insureds to tens of thousands of dollars in hidden risk.
Healthcare watchdogs message to the American Public: “Beware of the huge ad campaign that the federal government is funding touting ‘low cost’.” The administration is trying to find, woo and keep 10 million paying customers by this time next year.
"What the message should be is 'be a smart shopper'," said Caroline Pearson of Avalere Health, a private market analysis firm. "All we really see in this report is price, price, price. That's what the government thinks will draw (consumers) to the market, but it may also be what disappoints them when they get sick." Consumers get fooled by low monthly premiums and are shocked when providers send them bills for co-pays and deductibles.
Among healthy Americans, alternative approaches to health insurance are gaining in popularity as they prove that they offer far better coverage (meaning no hidden costs and long term benefits that protect their financial health as well as their physical well-being) than the policies available at healthcare.gov.
The bottom line, said Gary Claxton of the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation, is "do your own research."