About Your $3.16 a Day Healthcare Insurance Plan...   (February 21, 2013)

About your "affordable" healthcare coverage...better read the fine print.

I recently received the good news via an advert that I can buy healthcare insurance for as little as $3.16 a day. Wow, that's only $95 a month. Since my wife and I are paying $1,136 a month for stripped-down, minimal coverage with one of the nation's non-profit care providers, imagine my delight at this revelation.

I know from friends that biopsies can cost $70,000 (each, of course) and a few days in the hospital (no, not intensive care) can easily cost $120,000, so the news that I can have access to all this wonderfully, insanely costly medical care for less than $100 a month is almost too good to be true. Wow, this Affordable Care Act (ACA) a.k.a. Obamacare is already working!

The advert doesn't provide any details on restrictions and exclusions, so I have taken the liberty of providing some typical fine print:

Thank you for your interest in MirageCare, our low-cost healthcare plan. This low-cost plan is only available to those meeting these qualifications. You must:

1. Be between the ages of 22 and 24
2. Have a BMI (body mass index) of 22 or lower
3. Be a celibate non-smoker, non-drinker, non-driver
4. Be able to pass the Armed Forces Fitness Exam
5. Have no pre-existing health conditions

Examples of pre-existing conditions include:

1. Coughing. If you have coughed for any reason in the past five years, you are precluded from coverage, as you obviously have a pre-existing lung condition.

2. Racing heart. If your heart has ever raced for any reason other than vigorous exercise, coverage is not available to you.

3. If you have exercised vigorously, you are excluded from coverage because you've obviously already worn out your heart, knees, hips, etc.

4. Felt discouraged or blue. Pre-existing psychiatric conditions preclude coverage.

5. Experienced pain. Regardless of the nature of the pain, the causes are all pre-existing conditions. Coverage denied.

Restrictions: MirageCare has a number of restrictions on what treatment and conditions are covered.

1. Injuries resulting from accidents are not covered. Check your workers compensation coverage if you are employed; if you are unemployed, you qualify for Medicaid.

2. Any treatment provided by a hospital that could have been performed at a clinic across the border for $50 is excluded.

3. Emergency care that could have been avoided with common-sense measures are excluded. For example, if you suffer a heart attack that could have been avoided by jogging two hours a day and avoiding jelly doughnuts, emergency care is excluded.

Co-payments: All treatment requires a co-payment. The co-pay schedule is as follows:

1. For all care that costs us less than $100, the co-pay is $100.

2. We pay 80% of the cost of care that we ascertain is fair and reasonable. You pay 20% of all costs and everything above and beyond what we ascertain is fair and reasonable.

For example, if your MRI and other tests cost $10,000, we pay 80% what we ascertain is fair and reasonable, i.e. $1,000. In this case, we pay $800 and you pay $9,200--unless we ascertain the tests are related to your pre-existing conditions, in which case our share is $0.

3. You must pay the full cost of treatment and we will reimburse you in 6 to 9 months if we cannot find any exclusions or restrictions. We may also withhold payment for other reasons; please review pages 316 - 1,761 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for details.

Preventative care is free: Preventative care is defined as visiting our website where you can read all the guidelines for healthy living that you already know but ignore because they're bothersome.

Alternative plans: if you do not qualify for MirageCare, we have other plans starting at only $31.60 per day, per person--less than $4,000 for a family of four. We are proud to offer plans that qualify for $2,000 annual subsidies from the Federal government under ObamaCare. This drops the cost of your family plan from $46,000 a year to only $44,000--a real bargain in today's healthcare.

Restrictions apply, of course, because we're running a business here, Bucko.

More on this topic:

America's Hidden 8% VAT: Sickcare (May 10, 2012)

Can Chronic Ill-Health Bring Down Great Nations? Yes It Can, Yes It Will (November 23, 2011)

Things are falling apart--that is obvious. But why are they falling apart? The reasons are complex and global. Our economy and society have structural problems that cannot be solved by adding debt to debt. We are becoming poorer, not just from financial over-reach, but from fundamental forces that are not easy to identify or understand. We will cover the five core reasons why things are falling apart:

go to print edition 1. Debt and financialization
2. Crony capitalism and the elimination of accountability
3. Diminishing returns
4. Centralization
5. Technological, financial and demographic changes in our economy

Complex systems weakened by diminishing returns collapse under their own weight and are replaced by systems that are simpler, faster and affordable. If we cling to the old ways, our system will disintegrate. If we want sustainable prosperity rather than collapse, we must embrace a new model that is Decentralized, Adaptive, Transparent and Accountable (DATA).

We are not powerless. Not accepting responsibility and being powerless are two sides of the same coin: once we accept responsibility, we become powerful.

Kindle edition: $9.95       print edition: $24 on Amazon.com

To receive a 20% discount on the print edition: $19.20 (retail $24), follow the link, open a Createspace account and enter discount code SJRGPLAB. (This is the only way I can offer a discount.)

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