Preface by Hyung Namm HCAO Board member:
Why the lack of universal health care (and high education) keeps people in poverty
[The Official Poverty Threshold Should Be Much Higher]
The original poverty measures were (and still are) based largely on the food costs of the 1950s. But while food costs have doubled since 1978, housing has more than tripled, medical expenses are six times higher, and college tuition is eleven times higher. The Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Census Bureau have calculated that food, housing, health care, child care, transportation, taxes, and other household expenditures consume nearly the entire median household income.
Affordable it isn't, and it isn't "care." The individual mandate buys insurance - NOT "care." With the ACA if you are an average earner there is simply no way to pay for ACTUAL health CARE!
So: because of paying a monthly premium that even with the subsidy is not affordable, and having to buy additional dental coverage, and not having vision care insurance coverage available under any circumstances, many of us average earners find that:
* We CANNOT afford to go to a walk-in pay-up-front urgent care clinic. So if we get a cold or the flu or have an injury - anything short of the ER – there’s no money left over after paying the monthly premium to be able to pay out of pocket for ACTUAL illness or injury health services – and until we meet the high deductibles, often 20 percent or more of average gross income, THE INSURANCE IS WORTHLESS. Most of us will never be able to meet the deductible barring catastrophic health occurrences such as cancer or heart attack or stroke or multiple fractures or kidney failure. IF we experience such a catastrophic health occurrence, we STILL will have to meet that deductible and it is likely that in and of itself will mean a so-called "medical bankruptcy." In fact, the bankruptcy courts are already seeing the unpleasant results of high deductible insurance.Read More