A new report claims that the newly rolled out “Obamacare” health reforms is being blamed for some health insurance cost increases that it has nothing to do with. There have been some issues with the Obamacare rollout, but new research indicates that some parties are incorrectly blaming Obamacare for price increases on their insurance products.
Research indicates that nearly half of the Americans with higher incomes in the $50’000-$75’000 and employer health insurance believe that Obamacare has somehow made them worse off. 46% of the people in this salary bracket say that they are now paying more in out of pocket expenses than they were a year ago.
However insurance industry analysts suggest that this cost increase is actually insurance companies simply charging more and using Obamacare as a scapegoat. Some people are seeing out of pocket expenses like their copay for doctors visits going up rapidly and by as much as 30% in the last year alone. Analysts suggest this is simply insurance companies attempting to get more money out of insured parties to improve their bottom line.
Some cost increases are kicking in before Obamacare has even impacted them. For example the top of the line health insurance plans are blaming a clause in Obamacare which sees the tax rate change to 40% on these types of plans. The plans are being hiked up in cost now to cover this expense, but in reality the cost increase won’t happen until 2018, so the insurance companies are simply price gouging for additional profit on those plans.
With insurance companies acting in this way, it’s no wonder that support for the Obamacare reforms is slipping away. One recent poll indicates that only 38% of people are in favor of keeping the reforms. That is compared to polls a few months ago that indicated 46% support for the reforms.
Critics of the scheme had admitted that some of the worst case scenarios they thought might happen have not come to pass. Despite that the public sentiment is increasingly negative.
A recent survey also found 52 percent of women with employer-based coverage report higher out-of-pocket expenses, compared to only 35 percent of men. This is most because insurance companies were previously allowed to charge women more for insurance than men. Gender discrimination is prohibited under Obamacare, so those statistics are set to change after January 1.
Some analysts are concerned that consumers are unable to assess the Obamacare reforms on their actual merit because of the behavior of some insurance companies.