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RE: Affordable Healthcare Coverage

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Be very careful assuming Medicaid will just kick in like that.  My
father-in-law had a brain anyuerism 2 years ago and we had to look into
Medicaid, etc...  He was retired with no medical coverage.  Since he had
prior medical conditions his insurance was cost prohibitive.  Note that the
Medicaid and Medicare laws vary somewhat from state to state.  But in
Missouri his liquid assests (excluding house, car, and some other stuff)
needed to be less than $1000 (might have been $2000, can't remember the
exact number at this moment).  For his case, disability did not kick in for
6 months after his injury, which left him liable for all medical expenses
(hospital, each doctor's bill, prescriptions, nursing home costs (+-$3000
per month, etc.) from his injury.  I think Medicare takes 2 years from the
disability kicking in (2.5 years total) to be available for his use.  For
this type of case I highly recommend a lawyer to help through the various
and confusing laws and procedures for these goverment programs.

I think in some ways a limited insurance as noted previous could be
beneficial... just don't cut it too low.  If you do still have an income
coming in that is work related and not from retirement funds then disability
insurance can be very valuable as well.  I added disability coverage to my
own insurance after my father-in-laws problems.  ASCE does have some good
insurance available as well.

Hope this helps,
Greg Effland, P.E.



-----Original Message-----
From: Roger Turk [mailto:73527.1356(--nospam--at)compuserve.com]
Sent: Thursday, January 18, 2001 5:28 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org; Structuralist
Subject: Re: Affordable Healthcare Coverage


Anytime someone wants another person to pay *all* their health care
expenses, 
less a nominal co-pay, your premiums are going to be more than what you
would 
pay without coverage.  Blue Shield can justify the cost because some people 
want someone else to pay all their medical costs, the salaries paid to the 
executives are exorbitant, and the company has to make a profit to satisfy 
the shareholders.

Get a quote for *hospitalization* and *major* medical coverage and not 
coverage for everytime you go to the doctor's office and for routine tests.

Have the coverage capped at some figure, say, $30,000 or $50,000 and look
for 
an excess major medical coverage that has that number as a deductible.  Get 
quotes from an insurance agent, not an HMO.

If your doctor's office visit cost $100 a visit, both you and your wife
would 
have to go to the doctor's office more than twice a week each month to come 
close to the $1,000 premium.  If that is the case, then you both are
probably 
too sick to work, and if you can't work, you can't pay the premium and would

be covered under Medicaid.

Roger Turk
Tucson, Arizona

Dennis Wish wrote:

>>My wife called the Blue Shield Agent today and was told to expect a rate
increase every six months. As I explained in my original post, our rate went
up last May as I turned 50-years old. The rate went up about 40%. In July,
there was another 20% scheduled increase, another 20% increase in December
and another expected in March. How does Blue Shield justify so many cost
increases and how are others dealing with it?

We already ruled out Health Net as an unacceptable plan from references and
are now considering having to stay with Blue Shield and try to lower our
premiums by raising our deductible. We can move to Blue-Cross since we have
had no major illness in the last five years (although we do have existing
conditions).

I would be interested in hearing from other self-employed who are over 50
and dealing with rising health coverage costs.<<