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Editorial: More confusion from new health care act

November 29, 2013
The Alpena News

Reading provisions of the Affordable Health Care Act reminds us a good bit of trying to work a Rubik's Cube - it can result in lots and lots of frustration.

Eventually, there are those who will figure it out. Others, unfortunately, are left working their way through the maze of roadblocks, obstacles and websites that don't work properly.

The latest example of problems with the process stems from the recent announcement of President Barack Obama that he was allowing states to extend canceled insurance plans for one year to consumers who recently learned their policies otherwise were ending at the start of 2014.

While in theory the words sounded good, in reality they were mostly meaningless as states and insurance companies would need to revamp yet again policies and procedures they had just spent months revising in order to comply with the new health insurance law. The public was wondering how many could, or would, be in a position to adapt yet again.

Some of the answers were learned this week. While Michigan officials with the Department of Insurance and Financial Services approved allowing state insurers to reinstate canceled health care policies here, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan officials said for the most part, they were not interested in re-entering the marketplace.

And who can blame them?

BCBS officials did say they would keep one old plan - the Keep Fit plan - for individuals, but all others that had been canceled will remain shelved.

Thankfully this problem impacts relatively a small percentage of the entire insurance market in Michigan, but try to explain that to a person who is impacted, and is trying desperately to figure out where to turn next.

President Obama this month tried to make the best of a bad situation by offering to extend canceled policies.

As people are learning, however, just because the president gave permission to insurance companies to extend old policies, doesn't guarantee that would happen.

Naturally we feel for consumers caught in the middle.

It's just another confusing aspect of this new law all of us are trying to wade through.

 
 

 

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