The Cost of Health Care

After a year of non-stop mind-numbing partisan rhetoric on health care, it’s been a relief to hear the sweet sounds of silence since the Big Bill passed. However, I got a reminder recently that the issue is still with us.

I turned 60 this year, and as a birthday present my health care insurance company increased my rates.

As a self-employed person, I buy catastrophic insurance from Blue Shield. I’ve had the policy for years. Kaiser would be cheaper, but in terms of pay-for-service, I believe this is the cheapest insurance I can get for two adults. The deductible is $5,000, so most years we pay for all our doctor bills, prescriptions, etc. on top of our insurance premiums.

The annual insurance bill now is $21,168.

Is this sustainable? I don’t think so. According the Census Bureau, the median family income in 2007 was $50,000. Who can afford to pay 40% of their income for health insurance?

I don’t know what the answer is, but I’m pretty sure we don’t have it yet. So brace yourself for more mind-numbing partisan rhetoric.

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One Response to “The Cost of Health Care”

  1. Chris Says:

    It seems to me there are two costs in society that have been rising and rising beyond measure: health care/insurance and higher education. We need both of these but few can afford them anymore. It worries me.

    Health care, obviously, is the more important of the two, especially in later years for most people. But higher ed is essential too to accomplish vocational goals. And costs in both of these areas have been rising far more than the cost of living and the ability of ordinary people to pay.

    It worries me. And there seems little I can do about it.

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