As the Affordable Care Act looms, Americans across the country are scrambling to find the best way to save for their health insurance, while also paying down debt.
The answer to both of these questions is an assortment of strategies, and this article is a quick look at some of the best.
First, a little history: When Obamacare first passed in 2010, the idea of universal coverage was a dream.
It would be a boon to the economy, and would help lower the cost of health care.
“A universal health care system would create an economic and social dividend for the country,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) declared at the time.
“The cost of healthcare would fall to record lows.”
In fact, that same year, the CBO found that the Affordable Healthcare Act would lower the national debt by $119 billion over 10 years.
And if all goes well, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that by 2026, Americans will save an estimated $4,000 on their premiums.
While the plan has come a long way since then, the health law is still far from a reality.
A whopping 67% of Americans have enrolled in some form of insurance.
A whopping 61% have purchased health insurance in the past year, and nearly half have done so in 2018 alone.
And that’s only in the United States.
A number of other countries, including Germany, Switzerland, and Spain, are also offering universal coverage.
Yet the ACA remains a work in progress, with many details still being worked out.
Here are a few reasons why Americans are going to need to be more patient in their health care choices and make sure their money isn’t going to waste:1.
Most Americans are on their own: While health insurance may be the cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle, the fact of the matter is that most Americans are not on their terms.
In fact, only 17% of people who buy health insurance on their behalf are in the majority, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
That means that the vast majority of Americans, including millions of Americans on Medicare and Medicaid, are in fact at a disadvantage when it comes to making decisions about health care or making their monthly premiums.
A study released in May by the Urban Institute found that only 29% of the uninsured actually have a plan that meets their needs, and that more than a quarter of them are on plans that don’t meet their needs at all.
Even if you’re on a high-deductible plan, it’s still going to be harder to save money than the average American, because the deductibles on health insurance are high, and the amount you can deduct is often limited.
You may be paying too much: Another problem that many Americans face is that their premiums are set too high.
According to the National Council of Insurance, the average annual premium on an employer-sponsored plan is $2,846 for the employer and $2.2 million for the employee.
For individuals, the figure is $3,912.
If you’re working for an employer that provides coverage to both your employees and your family members, then your premium may be even higher.
The ACA’s individual mandate is expensive: The individual mandate requires that Americans pay a tax to support Obamacare.
For those who don’t have insurance through their employer or Medicaid, this tax can add up to as much as $2 per month.
It’s not just the cost that’s out of whack, either.
The mandate is also going to cost many Americans an estimated one-third of their annual income.
You might not have the money to buy coverage: If the ACA has a net positive effect on health care costs, then you’ll need to look at other options to help you out.
There are a number of tax credits available that can help lower your premium and/or reduce out-of-pocket expenses.
The American Medical Association recommends that people who are eligible for these tax credits consider making an upfront payment in order to get the most bang for their buck.
There are also a number that offer lower-cost plans that allow you to choose between coverage plans that meet your health needs and plans that aren’t.
You’re not getting the full bang for your buck: For some people, this means paying out- of-pocket or deductible amounts, rather than the total amount they’re paying in.
This is a great option if you are having difficulty paying your bills, but it’s not the best option if the bill you have coming due is more than you’re willing to pay.
The law has a lot of loopholes: Obamacare requires all Americans to carry insurance or pay a penalty.
The ACA requires Americans to purchase health insurance or face a penalty, which is one of the reasons why many people find themselves stuck with high premiums and a limited choice when it’s