There has been a lot of discussion about the new health care program this year and with the deadline to sign up quickly approaching, there has been a bit of a rush to sign up. I registered for the healthcare.gov website right when it launched but have waited until today to decide whether or not to sign up. You can read about my experience using the website and reviewing the plans here.
After much contemplating I decided I better sign up for one of the health care plans. As a self employed person, I do not have health insurance through an employer so this is the best option at the moment. Now I still think the plans are not all that great. There are some good plans available but they are very expensive. However, with the cost of health care these days, it is a good idea to have some kind of protection even if it is unlikely you will actually need it. Also the fact that you have to pay a fee if you don't sign up is a little extra incentive to pick a plan with the new system.
So after much review, I decided to go with one of the basic plans, a Bronze HMO plan from Blue Cross Blue Shield. Normally I would prefer a PPO but in this case the comparable HMO had much better benefits for about the same cost where the PPO covers almost nothing until you pay all the deductible which is very high. My current doctor is not in this plan so I will probably have to find a new doctor that is part of this group.
There is also an option to get dental insurance along with the health insurance. I reviewed the plans and decided to skip the dental for now. Adding up the monthly costs compared to the cost of just paying by cash for the same service, the self pay is a bit cheaper. I take pretty good care of my teeth so I decided to hold off on the dental insurance. It would be a good option if you do plan to have dental work done or if you have kids to cover for dental insurance.
So I officially applied for the new health care program. So far I have not received a bill, but they say it needs to be paid by the start date which is May 1st this year. This is all kind of an experiment and we will see how it turns out.