The New American Coverage Crisis

Prior to January 1, 2014, the usually accepted estimate of the number of uninsured people in this country will be 48 million, or about 15 percent of the population.  But on that day, the number will jump to 64 million as almost 16 million people are lost from the insurance roles.  Overnight, 20 percent of the American population will be uninsured, and the Affordable Care Act will be to blame.  This is bad news not just for the newly uninsured, but also for any health care provider who wants to stay in business.  But the worse news is that there are two more waves of this to come.

So why are so many plans being cancelled when the ACA was passed as a way to bring coverage to 30 million people?  Because in seeking that coverage level, the law mandated that every insurance plan in the country meet four requirements: 1) Offer a certain package of benefits that it may not have offered before; 2) eliminate limits on pre-existing conditions; 3) eliminate limits on lifetime caps; and 4) apply a maximum community rating provision of three to one.  16 million individual health plans across the nation do not meet these requirements, and must be flat-out cancelled on the first of the year in order to keep in compliance with the new ACA mandates….

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