I got the letter Monday at my house. Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi have determined that my Aetna health insurance plan, the one I was told I could keep if I liked, is not adequate, does not meet their standards, and will not be renewed. Now, this is part of an employer group plan, and we are not being cast directly to the wolves like 7 million individuals were late last year with their private plans. No, we will be guided to an as yet unknown “qualified” plan that meets the approval of our benevolent governing overlords. We just have no idea what that will be. Or what it will cost.
Here is the rub on this particular situation. The letter was sent to Robert Wilson, employee; advising him that his employer's plan would not be renewed, and that his employer would have to select another plan this summer. Robert Wilson the employer has not yet been notified of anything, and was given no advance notice that this was coming. That means that when employer Wilson arrived at the office, clutching his crumpled Aetna letter in his sweaty little palms, he encountered his employees each clutching their crumpled Aetna letters and wondering what it all meant.
Employer Wilson had no answer for them.
Likely, he told them, we would see a plan with increased deductibles, increased co-pays and increased premiums. We would also be seeing increased benefits, like free birth control and family planning added to the policies. That was great comfort to my office, as everyone here is over 50 and post-menopausal, so birth control and abortions are naturally at the top of our coverage agendas.
No, we recognize that we don't need those things, but we must pay for those things to help cover people that cannot directly afford those things. Essentially we must pay for insurance we do not need in order to provide our nation's youth the ability to engage in sexual activity without consequence.
And doesn't that make us all feel special. At least we can watch much of it on YouTube and Facebook.
Of course, this is not just to subsidize the unfettered humping of young America – no, this is also to allow those with pre-existing conditions a chance at coverage. Problem is, as a group plan, some of those protections were already present, and interestingly, a justification given when our premiums increased 32% last year was that new fees and requirements of the ACA were largely to blame. Now am I not sure what to think.
We've been with Aetna for 14 years, and I have found them to be a consistent and reliable insurer. I recognize that what is happening is part of a far grander scheme, and that everyone is making adjustments in this process. As an employer I just wish I had been given a clue. My people need answers, and at the moment my best bet is to send them to Radio Shack – cause I've got nothing.
All I know is that it does not matter whether you like your plan or not. You have no choice. The cancellation of employer provided group plans, delayed by the employer mandate rollback of last year, has begun; and this is where it really starts to get fun.