Some Costs To Consider
When it comes to healthcare, you’ve got to think about a number of things:
What is your family situation?
Are you single, or are you married?
Do you have children?
Are you considering healthcare for your business?
Are you required to provide healthcare if your employees work a certain amount of time?
All these things will build into what you’re going to pay for healthcare annually. That said, as with anything, there are always ways to get around expenses.
With the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or “Obamacare” as it’s more widely known, much difficulty has ensued. Many businesses have experienced stresses they didn’t realize they would. Individuals have in many cases seen premiums increase.
Many are electing not to pay for healthcare out of compulsion, but this results in a tax penalty. And there is definitely confusion about the Obamacare penalty. To clarify, it will apply through 2018, and legally you’re obliged to pay—according to Healthcare.com: “As the cost of insurance premiums and deductibles continue to go up, some people may choose to pay the tax penalty, which, in many cases, is cheaper than buying insurance.”
What’s the cost? No less than $695 per individual and $2,085 per family. Still, if your monthly healthcare plan were only $500 a month, that’s $6,000 a year. If as a single person you could find healthcare for $100 a month, you’d be spending $1.2k a year. So $695 is actually still a saving, even though it’s a penalty you wouldn’t have had to pay until the ACA legislation went into place.
Now the IRS has said they will enforce collection of this cost going forward. Whether or not that will happen remains to seen. It’s generally good not to play with fate, however; your best bet is to pay for insurance. Still, if you elect to pay the fee, diet on healthy foods, and work out as regularly as you can, you may be able—individually—to make it through the year for less than $2k in associated healthcare costs, and still be OK.
If you factor in at least one $200 Urgent Care cost, $700 for a year-long membership at a good gym, and $695 in taxes, you’re looking at $1,595.
Spend another $405 on vitamins, minerals, supplements, or education materials aimed at healthy eating, and you’re set for under $2k. If you’re injured or come down with a debilitating illness, you’re in trouble. But otherwise, you’ll be fine.
Implications Worth Considering
Obviously, such a solution won’t work for a family. It also won’t work for a business. Thankfully, 2018 is the last year where penalties for Obamacare will apply. More affordable options will likely be available soon.
Additionally, you’ve likely built up some budgetary strength through this trying period if you are in a business. The end result of this could be better healthcare at reduced rates for your employees, and an ultimate expansion in your budget. Don’t despair, there is light at the end of the tunnel!
Healthcare is changing as technology does. There are negative effects on mental health developing, but there are fixes coming as well. Telemedicine, telepresence robots, extra-national procedures, and increasing competition will help streamline the market going forward.
Keep an eye out for new healthcare providers you may not have heard of before, and always be diligent to research whichever healthcare option you choose either for yourself or your family. If you put in the proper footwork beforehand, you can always reduce your recurring expenses.