Hungry For Change

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Hungry For Change

When thinking of change, the image comes to mind of digging through the sofa searching for those beautiful silver coins that gather when you don’t need them, but elude you when you do. Perhaps you woke up, checked the mirror, opened your mouth and shrieked because your tonsils are covered in white speckles. What choice do you have? You are sick and now you must gather up change for your insurance co-pay. You think, “No wonder I fell the other night. Maybe it had nothing to do with relaxing with friends. “It sounds like a good excuse, anyway.

Winston Churchill said, “There is nothing wrong with change, as long as it is in the right direction.”

This begs the question, is insurance, primarily health insurance, going in the right direction? Obamacare and insurance regulations sound perfect on paper, but when it affects you, everything changes, no pun intended. Government funded programs, such as national service, are hit the hardest.

When did you check on your health insurance last?
When did you check on your health insurance last?

For example, AmeriCorps Vista members receive excellent health and life insurance coverage, but because the policy does not cover pre-existing conditions, it is not covered under the Health Insurance Marketplace st andards. An individual then must seek Medicaid coverage or add a policy despite the fact that they cannot take another job to increase their income that pays under five dollars per hour. In other words, you have all the coverage imaginable, but come April, 2015, unless you pay nearly $100 extra per month, even though you have $26 per month to spare, you are penalized.

If this does not send you into throes of maniacal laughter, nothing will. What else can go wrong when you have what you need, but you are being told it’s irrelevant. Buy another policy that will change your five dollar co-pay to heaven knows what. As you sift through your possibilities, you see that the policy covers disability, HIV or long term care, but the cost goes up.

You go to an insurance agency, wreaking of smoke. With a knowing look, the agent asks, “Do you smoke cigarettes?” You bite your lip and say, “No, I quit a long time ago.”

Your head is spinning, thinking how anything adverse will add to the cost of your policy price. You try to think about any conditions you do have, but nothing has ever been diagnosed. The only terminal disease you have is stress brought on by the changes across all insurance markets. You sigh, resolving to just get through the process and take anything that proves you have coverage, even when it really is just an illusion.

Many insurance agencies will offer a guarantee, but how does it benefit you? Step back from the urge to take whatever you get. There are options, you need to breathe, perhaps meditate and gather that lost change, because in this world, service providers often are hungry for change.