My brother is individually insured in California. Here’s what’s he says about what will happen to his insurance plan:
More details on my forced insurance changes for 2014 (this is the complete summary provided by my insurer – I’m not cherry picking details):
Deductible: $3K -> 5K.
Doctor copay: $40->60.
Specialist copay: $40->70.
Urgent care: $40->120.
Lab: 100% coverage->70%.
Xray: 100% coverage -> 70%.
Emergency outpatient: $100->300
Outpatient surgery: 100% -> 70%
Inpatient hospitalization: 100% -> 70%
Generic drugs: $10->$19
Preferred brand drugs: N/A ->$50
Non-preferred brand drugs: N/A->$75
Acupuncture: N/A -> $60.
So basically, I get brand-name drug option and cheaper acupuncture in exchange for an extra $2k+ out of pocket when I lose my current plan and am forced to switch to this one. So much for “bending the cost curve” “your premiums will go down” and “if you like your plan, you can keep it” and other wild fantasies from the Organizer-In-Chief of the “reality-based community”.
Of course, some people lose and some people gain from Obamacare: that’s the whole idea. Dueling anecdotes about the law’s consequences don’t really tell us much about how much “society” will gain or lose. But the redistribution of wealth from the healthy to the sick that the law accomplishes also takes away many people’s freedom, and if you care about the freedom of the individual, every anecdote matters.