Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Affordable Health Care

More and more Americans are in need of affordable health care. Some employers for hardworking employees have had to cut back on some of the health care for everyone because of the rising costs and working with a budget. I know, I am one of them. I have a great job and prior to 2006, I had amazingly wonderful health care. Suddenly, my employer announced last fall that it was getting too expensive and switching health care providers. The company was seeking more affordable health care that would benefit all of its employees. Some people will argue that my new insurance is still great and I am fortunate to have it. I do agree, to some extent. However, their search for affordable health care now costs me double the money from my paychecks to have my husband and daughter on my policy. Yes, that is correct, it is costing me double what I was accustomed to. This means, that for my company to provide affordable health care to all of the employees, it is no longer affordable for us. Without getting a raise, my paychecks are dwindling just so that my family can have health care.
Granted, my health care is still decent. The new company that we have is not as good as our previous. In my opinion, my company's search for affordable health care not only left all of us with a significant cut in our paychecks, but higher co-pays and more out-of-pockets expenses from us. Four years ago, I gave birth to a wonderful little girl. My old insurance paid 100% of my hospital stay. Today, if I had a baby, it would cost me almost $4,200 for my out-of-pocket fees. That's just for the hospital and delivery. I would also be paying more for my co-pays. Somehow, it just doesn't seem to be fair to the majority that is involved.
There are more and more affordable health care programs being created to help those that do not have any coverage. Single mothers, families working for companies that don't offer coverage, low-income households - they are all able to get affordable health care or even free health care. While I am appreciative of those programs because they are savings lives and helping people to grow stronger and healthier, some people take advantage of them. Those programs should be for struggling families who are taking steps to better their futures, not for people who have no motivation and live off of the state systems and affordable health care programs. The taxpayers, such as myself, are contributing to the affordable health care programs. Meanwhile, my family hesitates to visit the doctor because the costs we now could incur. My employer definitely found advantages to finding affordable healthcare for its employees. However, their money saving technique wasn't good news to employees. We suddenly were making up for their affordable health care endeavor - by seeing less of our paychecks. Something needs to be done in this country to offset rising costs and provide more affordable health care to those who are in need.