“If you get health insurance through your job, beware: you might be picking up more of the cost of your medical care than you realize,” Peter Ubel of Duke writes over on Forbes. “With increasing frequency, employers are directing their workers to the kind of high deductible, high out-of-pocket insurance plans that leave workers financially responsible for a surprising portion of their healthcare expenses. Not long ago, having insurance coverage meant your costs were largely covered. Americans could count on their employers to offer health insurance plans that covered the vast majority of their healthcare expenses. What’s more, employers even chipped in generously to cover a good chunk of people’s monthly premiums. As a result, Americans with good jobs could live their lives unafraid that they would be financially devastated by an unexpected acute illness. But this generosity came at an increasingly unaffordable cost for American companies, with the price of health insurance threatening their bottom line. In response, companies have looked for ways to get their workers to pick up more of the tab. If you are feeling squeezed by healthcare costs, pay close attention when you sign up for an insurance plan. What looks like a bargain probably isn’t. Enter high out-of-pocket health plans. On the surface, these plans look like bargains, because they cost less each month than other plans. When signing up for insurance, many people are attracted to these plans, knowing they will have less of their take home pay diverted to an insurance company. But then they discover that even a minor illness can turn that bargain to a burden.” Peter Ubel, “Bait And Switch: The Sneaky Way Your Employer Just Passed Healthcare Costs Onto You,” Forbes.
Jeanne Pinder is the founder and CEO of ClearHealthCosts. She worked at The New York Times for almost 25 years as a reporter, editor and human resources executive, then volunteered for a buyout and founded... More by Jeanne Pinder