I just read that two million people who get help with their health insurance premiums are missing out on extra help with their deductible, co-pays, and MOOP (max out-of-pocket). They missed out because they did not sign up for a Silver Plan.
Silver plans offer extra help.
If a person’s income (or a family’s income) is less than 250% of the federal poverty level, they must enroll in a Silver plan to get their deductible reduced, their MOOP reduced, and their co-pays reduced. Their Silver plan essentially gets turned into a Gold plan with these adjustments.
I went to healthsherpa.com to take a quick look at how lower income changes the cost of health insurance. I would have gone to healthcare.gov, but that web site does not allow a person to “shop” at this time of year. Why did they take down this feature after the Open Enrollment Period?
I put in info for a woman who is 60 years old, is a non-smoker, and lives in Tucson, AZ. Then I played around with different incomes. First I put in $30,000, knowing a person with this income will get some help with her premium. In fact, she’ll get a $174 in premium help each month, no matter which type of plan she signs up for.
$30,000 income: SOME PREMIUM HELP
She gets premium help, but her deductible is pretty big. Her MOOP ($6,600) and co-pays are also pretty high.
$20,000 income: PREMIUM SUBSIDY PLUS COST REDUCTIONS
She gets more help with her premium, and then she gets even more help. Her deductible, MOOP, and co-pays have been adjusted because of her income. Even the ER visit co-pay is cut in half. It says a hospital stay has no charge after the deductible?? I need to double check this with the Meritus site because this is really, really good.
If this woman making $20,000 per year chooses a Gold plan, there is no adjustment to the deductible, the MOOP, or the co-pays. According to reports, two million people with fairly low income did not know about this extra help when they signed up for health insurance through Obamacare. Ouch!