Covered California and ACA related questions from consumers, employers and agents are answered by Phil Daigle with the best information available at the time. Archived entries may no longer be accurate as the ACA and Covered California knowledge-base is evolving quickly. TO REQUEST A PERSONAL RESPONSE INCLUDE EMAIL ADDRESS.

High Deductible Out-of-Pocket Expenses Too High

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Question: Our company health insurance is only offered as high deductible, What can i do with costs that I can’t afford?

Answer: Your dilemma is very common nowadays. On the one hand, your employer is probably doing the best he or she can by providing health insurance coverage of any kind. On the other hand, you, the employee do not perceive it as much of a benefit because the high deductible means high out-of-pocket expenses for covered medical expenses. Expenses your are afraid that you cannot afford.

It’s understandable that you feel like you are not getting much of a benefit, but here’s are couple things to remember: First, high-deductible health insurance is a whole lot better than no insurance at all. Even though you may never reach your deductible amount, you still get a big discount on covered medical expenses within your network, in some cases the negotiated amount that your end up paying is less that half the original billed amount. Secondly, if you were to have a catastrophic medical expense, say $50,000, the maximum out-of-pocket amount on your policy, probably no more that $10,000, would at least set a limit on what you owe that you could reasonably expect to pay off over time. So that high deductible insurance could make the difference between having to file for bankruptcy or not.

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