2014-02-14 / Columnists

Health& Harmony

Obamacare And You
By Dr. Nancy Gahles, DC, CCH


DR. NANCY GAHLES DR. NANCY GAHLES The ever changing landscape of regulations and enforcement of deadlines makes for a treacherous path to choice and application for healthcare under the Obamacare administration.

It is clearly understood by now that you cannot keep your old insurance plan or your old doctor. Nothing stays the same. You can’t go back. We all know how that works.

What we can do is make smart choices based upon the information we have at hand.

The NYS Insurance exchange offers several options for health insurance. Yes, you do have choice. No, the choices are not great. What does that mean? There are high deductibles ($2500-$6000) and 50 percent co-pays after you meet those deductibles associated with the Bronze and Silver plans. Yes, there are subsidies offered to lower your premium. All this essentially means is that you will pay less upfront and more on the backside. Most people buy sticker price. They look at the price per month and assess whether they can afford this premium. Few analyze the policy for the “other” information about costs. There is a cap on out of pocket expense at approximately $10,000. This means that you should have $10,000 in savings in order to pay for out of pocket expenses BOTH up to the point of your deductible AND after that, for your 50 percent of expenses generated by physician office visit as well as hospital costs.

Herein lies the rub. These are the costs that spiral as there is no transparency in pricing...yet. We, as consumers of healthcare, have not been trained to ask the price of an office visit or the procedures that occur there, before we schedule an appointment. Nor would you be likely to get an accurate answer. Fees for service are dictated by insurance companies and the doctor doesn’t know what you will have to pay until after the claim is filed. Caveat Emptor! Buyer Beware!

The Common Sense Solution is for you, the consumer, to begin to gather information about your policy, and your health assets and liabilities. Develop a Health Investment Portfolio that empowers you to invest in YOURSELF. Realize a Healthy Return on Your Investment (ROI). Health IS Wealth! For more information on how I can help you develop your individualized portfolio, contact me at askdrnancy@aol.com or 718-634-4577.

To find my book at Amazon just type in Nancy Gahles in the search bar. Here is the link to TEDxTalk: www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6bZ Bwl636s.

May The Blessings Be!

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