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Think about your income, your family budget, and your health care expenses. How much can you reasonably afford to spend on your health care?

If you’re like most Americans, the odds are high that the number you came up with is vastly lower than the amount the federal government says you can afford. This should be of great concern to former pharmaceutical executive Alex Azar, President Trump’s nominee to lead the Department of Health and Human Services. He would be wise to address exactly what constitutes affordable health care during his upcoming confirmation hearings and, if confirmed, as the next HHS secretary.

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  • I just got a quote from the Exchange (in CT) for Health Insurance for a family of three with an annual income of $85000:

    The cheapest option in the list will cost about $18000 (annualized) with a deductible over $11000! Wow! What a bargain! Is nobody watching this stuff? How this could happen? By the way, the best plan would cost me about $45000 with a deductible around $3000 in case I like best of everything.

  • Affordability becomes an even bigger problem if you are “rich” enough not to get Obamacare premium subsidies (household income > $96K). In the county where I live, the lowest price bronze plan on the exchange has a $15,000 premium for a family of four. That also gets you a deductible of $7,150 individual/$14,300 family. You could end up paying nearly $30K before you even get a dime of “coverage.” Oh, and this is for an HMO plan, so kiss your old doctors goodbye.

    Under the Obamacare affordability provision, this plan is unaffordable (8.05% of household income) for those making $188,000 and under! For all the talk about the individual mandate, it’s already moot for those who don’t get Obamacare subsidies. There’s a good likelihood that I’m just going to walk away and self-insure next year.

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