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Paul Ryan, Ohio Health Insurance Exchange And Miami University

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Paul Ryan, the Ohio Health Insurance Exchange and Miami University. What could they possibly have in common and why am I writing about it? I have to admit…the title is a bit odd, but I know a little bit about all three.

Of course, Paul Ryan is Mitt Romney’s running mate and nominee for Vice President of the US. And he also just happens to be a 1992 Miami University graduate with degrees in economics and political science. Long-time economics professor Richard Hart was one of his mentors while there.

As a 1980 graduate of Miami, I also was a business major although I don’t remember Professor Hart. But I did take many of the same classes as Ryan, and perhaps was taught by a few of the same professors. And I assume we took classes in many of the same buildings. But I have a feeling that he spent more time at the library than I did.

I ate many of these at Miami. Too many!

I am certain that Representative Ryan and I have crossed many of the same paths while at Oxford. Of course the “Bagel & Deli” shop is where Ryan stopped to eat on August 15th. I remember the place well, having ordered there about five times per week during my Miami stay. Delivery is a great feature about college eateries. Although I was not in a fraternity  and never drove the “Wienermobile”  as Paul did ( while he worked summers for Oscar Mayer), the memories we both share of Mother Miami are still quite fresh.

The Exchange?

By now, you may be wondering how the proposed Ohio Health Insurance Exchange fits in this discussion. Under existing legislation, the way you buy your health insurance will change in 2014. Currently, you can pick and choose among hundreds of available plans from more than a dozen reputable companies. You can pick and choose the benefits that YOU want and often exclude coverage you don’t need. You can apply for a policy at any time, and cancel your contract without worrying about non-compliance.

For example, if you’re in your 50s and simply don’t want to pay for maternity benefits, since it’s unlikely you’ll utilize it, you can pick plans that don’t charge you for that rider. Or, if you have been reasonably healthy and prefer to cover large medical claims instead of paying for office visit coverage you never use, you can choose a high-deductible catastrophic plan.  Do you want a $10,000 deductible? No problem. Do you prefer a cheap Ohio temporary health insurance plan that costs less than $50 per month? Consider it done!

In 2014, It All Changes

But in 2014, your choices will be drastically cut and you will be forced to pay for coverage you may not need or want. You’ll have to choose between a Platinum, Gold, Silver or Bronze plan. That’s it. Maternity and other benefits you may not want will be required on all policies. And yes, you’ll pay for that. Although tax incentives may help, premiums will go up and the number of providing physicians will probably decrease.

By now, everyone knows that Paul Ryan is one of the leading proponents of changing and improving our health insurance system, but in a much more cost-effective and consumer-friendly way than the current proposed changes. His ideology will reward healthy persons with personal health saving accounts that accumulate funds if you don’t use it. And unhealthy persons will be able to afford to purchase quality health care through the top health insurers.

Regardless of who wins the election, I do know this. Paul Ryan will be a major contributor to lowering our national budget, Miami University will still attract the brightest high school students, and I’ll continue to eat bagels. As for health insurance in Ohio,  you can count one one thing. You will continue to view the lowest rates on our website. You can buy direct, or with our help. And if you’re in the area, we’ll recommend a good bagel place as well!

Obamacare Upheld By Supreme Court Ruling – How Does This Impact Ohio?

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By a narrow vote of 5-4, the Supreme Court ruled this morning that the federal government can impose a tax on persons that refuse to purchase health insurance. Thus, health care reform (Obamacare) will proceed and move forward and much of the implementation will take place starting in 2014. But what about individuals and families in Ohio? How will we be impacted? We’ll try to answer some of those questions.

Does this change the way health insurance is purchased here in Ohio?

Currently, there is no “Exchange” set up here and there is a chance one may never be set up. However, Ohio can choose to allow the federal government to set it up. The current administration would like to see “Exchanges” in 2014 dictate how coverage is purchased. But the clunky nature of the Exchanges along with their unpopularity have many legislatures and citizens concerned. Additional research information is found here, with additional details on “benchmark plans,” “essential health benefits” and other ACA Legislation features.

So for now, will continue to offer the lowest available rates from all of the top companies. Quotes are free and so is the professional service You can apply online or we’ll fax/email an application.  If Exchanges become the law of the land, we will continue to help you find affordable coverage through these government-run websites, which will also be referred to as “Marketplaces.”

How do most Ohioans feel about the health care law?

Last year, in a referendum (Issue 3), Ohioans voted against the change. Most residents of the state are still against the massive overhaul, and this could affect the candidate they vote for in the upcoming presidential election. If Mitt Romney is elected, it’s possible part or all of the legislation could be repealed or simply have funds withheld for its implementation. If Romney is not elected, the legislation will be fully implented and the healthcare landscape will change.

What are some of the good parts of the law?

Actually, there are many portions of the “Affordable Care Act” that are quite positive. For example, most preventive expenses are now covered with no waiting period and no out-of-pocket expense and dependents can stay on their parent’s health care plans until age 26. Insurance companies also must now spend less money on administrative expenses and more on health care costs. And of course, in 2014 insurers can not deny an applicant coverage because of any pre-existing conditions. However, after an Open Enrollment period ends, alternative coverage will have to be arranged.

Will premiums in Ohio now go up in 2014?

Yes. And perhaps substantially. Since insurance carriers can not decline any applicant for medical conditions, healthy individuals and even fairly-healthy individuals will have to pay more. And maybe a lot more. Look for rates to increase once 2014 arrives. What many people don’t realize is that currently, rates in Ohio are among the lowest in the country and with the Risk Pool and Open Enrollment, almost anybody can qualify for coverage. In 2014, it may be different.

I have a policy right now. Can I keep it in 2014?

The President says you can. Many experts in the field say you can’t. I guess we’ll eventually find out.

Legislative Reform Update For 2010

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Ohio health insurance reform has begun. So far, no major changes have occurred that will affect you. While we believe that the proposed health care reform changes will ultimately  increase Ohio health insurance rates, we””ll continue to monitor the progress and hope that rates stabilize.

Listed below are some of the most recent and relevant news/blog articles:

Health Care Reform Will Cost $115 Billion More

Health Care Reform Package Flawed

Health Care Reform Will Impact Southern Ohio

Small Business Group Joins Health Reform Lawsuit



April  2012. Of course, most of you know that the Supreme Court has heard arguments and is determining the legality  of forcing consumers to purchase health care coverage. A decision should be made within the next 90 days. If the mandate is ruled unconstitutional, the future of the entire “Affordable Care Act” will be in jeopardy. We’ll try to keep you updated. -Ed

August  2012. The mandate is constitutional! So get ready for the Exchanges in 2014. Our website will continue to provide up to date rates and online applications.

January 2017 – The future of Obamacare is murky. President Trump will be tweaking, replacing, or repealing the ACA Legislation. We expect significant changes will be proposed within six months, and by 2019, most of these changes will be effective.