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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 06-07-2006, 01:15 AM   #21
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

Did some more research into COBRA at w*rk this week.* 18 mo. is the limit in my case (this employer will go up to 36 in cases of disability) But, all of our health plans have a conversion to individual coverage clause * Don't know at what cost.

I still have lot's of time to plan and ponder,* tenative date to pull the ejection seat ring is early june 2007. Don't want to stay that long , but I must for vesting purposes.

Maybe if the big ressesion does hit , and the city budget get's hit hard , some sort of "Bronze Handshake" will be available to get people to leave.They may not offer it to me ,as they sort of like my w*rk .

Thank's everyone for your input.
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-05-2006, 11:09 PM   #22
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

I've still got 27 mo. to go, 11 of work an 18 of COBRA.* Looking at the Kaiser HMO website, they apply a flat rate of 170% of the standard rate for HIPAA plans, with total rate of $312 to $429 /mo for 40-49 age.depending on the plan.It jumps about 50 % for 50-59 age bracket.

This is way under the cost for any other HMO or PPO. 40-50 % in some cases.

My Doctor thinks Kaiser is the worst healthcare under the sun. Others are very happy. I'd only be concerned if I had some really bad illness and got rationed care.

Is Kaiser really bad or are those reports from a few unhappy members.
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-05-2006, 11:27 PM   #23
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakewood90712
My Doctor thinks Kaiser is the worst healthcare under the sun. Others are very happy. I'd only be concerned if I had some really bad illness and got rationed care.
One of my neighbors does operations analysis number-crunching for Kaiser, another one recruits doctors for the network.

They both think that doctors treat HMO staff as though they're the worst things under the sun...
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-06-2006, 06:56 AM   #24
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakewood90712
I've still got 27 mo. to go, 11 of work an 18 of COBRA.* Looking at the Kaiser HMO website, they apply a flat rate of 170% of the standard rate for HIPAA plans, with total rate of $312 to $429 /mo for 40-49 age.depending on the plan.It jumps about 50 % for 50-59 age bracket.

This is way under the cost for any other HMO or PPO. 40-50 % in some cases.

My Doctor thinks Kaiser is the worst healthcare under the sun. Others are very happy. I'd only be concerned if I had some really bad illness and got rationed care.

Is Kaiser really bad or are those reports from a few unhappy members.
29 months by my count (11 + 18), but close.

My MIL has retiree healthcare from Kaiser in CO and she has been very happy with them.
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-06-2006, 10:43 AM   #25
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

Kaiser kaiser kaiser....

I'm a former customer and my dad uses their medicare hmo currently. I know a fair number of people who use them.

The good: minimal paperwork, minimal horsepuckey, I always got an appointment quickly and when I wanted one (within a day or two...none of this "we can see you next week" stuff), the doctor popped into the room within a couple of minutes of the scheduled appointment, it was usually an actual doctor and not a PA or NP, and I had my prescriptions filled in the same building within a couple of minutes of them being written, without any problems. Costs were reasonable for the coverage received compared to PPOs available. Services rendered seemed to be better than adequate, I never had to twist anyones arms to do something that I thought should be done, no trying to keep it cheap. Consumer reports rated them #1 in health care insurance providers last time I checked, over both all other HMO's and PPO's. I liked them fine and would use them again.

The bad: appointments are short, usually limited to 12 minutes. Doctors rotate through so fast your eyes will spin, so you probably wont see the same doctor twice unless you go frequently. My wifes friends husband developed stomach cancer and died, and her opinion was that they didnt do as much as they could have although he ignored his symptoms for over a year and he was pretty much a goner when he walked through the door. May be tough to get truly specialized attention depending on where you live and what resources are available to you. Some nickle and diming on the co-pays, ie you see the doctor and he nicks you for a copay, he sends you to get a blood draw and an x-ray and they each take a copay again.

Short answer: great for the average to moderate user of medical care. Maybe not so great if you anticipate (by whatever means) needing a lot of medical care.
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-06-2006, 05:14 PM   #26
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

I was with Kaiser for a few years, and I agree with CFB.* They are good about doing basic stuff efficiently... You get appointments fairly quick and there's hardly any paperwork.* *

But if you need to see a specialist it becomes really difficult.* I'm used to PPO insurance where I can just make an appointment with a specialist myself, but with Kaiser it always required a visit to the primary care doctor before he would refer you to a specialist.* Then they try to funnel you back to the primary care doctor for followup.* So you almost have to plan on spending twice as much time going to the doctors, because you have to see your primary care doctor almost every time you need a specialist.* Sometimes you can get to the specialist right away but other times you need to see your primary doctor a few times before they will give you to a specialist.* And you have to be loud about demanding the specialist.* I never had to deal with any particularly time-sensitive conditions while I was with Kaiser, but I've heard horror stories (kidneys anyone).

The quality of their primary care doctors is poor.* *Turnover is high; I went through three I believe while I was there.* *Two were truly bad, flat out rude and uncaring.* After every appointment you get a survey in the mail and at least it's satisfying to know there's a computer somewhere tabulating my poor experiences.*

On the plus side they do offer good value, and the specialists I saw were good.* They have great scheduling automation so you don't wait very long after your appointment to see the doctor.*

The downside to all the automation is that there's nobody to tell you what's going on.* For instance I had a regular prescription filled at the kaiser pharmacy (you can't go anywhere else), and the amount I would pay for the prescription varied almost each time.* *Nobody could tell me why the price was different each time, just "that's what the computer tells us your price is".* At walgreens or other independent pharmacies they will tell me things like "If you refill before such and such a date you will have to pay more because you need to wait X days, starting on Y date".* *At kaiser they somehow couldn't tell me that kind of stuff, just "your price is Z this time because that's what the price is".
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-06-2006, 05:55 PM   #27
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

FYI

The FACT act (FCRA, part II) includes a free health care record. You can get it at

http://www.mib.com/

I don't have one and I've had individual policies for years.
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance
Old 07-06-2006, 07:15 PM   #28
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Re: Planning to apply for Health Insurance

I think the state you live in is the biggest factor.

As stated* previously skies the limit with Hippa rates so even though they have to insure you is it really realistic at $2000 a month to go Hippa.

State risk pools seem cheaper and usually will accept you if are rejected by one company or the outside policy you are offered costs more than the state risk pool rate. Or if you have one of the selected illnesses on their list.
New Mexico is real cheap maybe $400 or $500 for one person and if your income is low maybe 200% of poverty level premiums can be less than $200.
Most members here have higher incomes but if you have tax free invesments you may qualify since your taxable income is low.
Colorodo is also cheap for a risk pool.

Then there are the guarantee issue states. NY will take everyone and you can get an HMO such as HIP for maybe $400 plus. Low income reduces premiums. New Jersey and Mass also have to take you but premiums may be higher. And HMO's some people do not like.

Any opinions on HMO's as opposed to Blue Cross PPO's.?
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