Interesting exercise I've gone through. I left my job in April to branch out on my own, single member LLC as a consultant. Now my accrued benefits from my former position are expiring, and I was looking for some health insurance, something high deductible because frankly I haven't used more than a few thousand in benefits over the last decade...
Except that I was diagnosed with sleep apnea in 2009. Now, studies show that untreated apnea can lead to some pretty nasty stuff down the road, but I have treatment (cpap) which I use as I'm supposed to, and my health is great. I'm 33 years old, non smoker, average height/weight, work out regularly, no conditions other than the one that hasn't cost me a dime since acquiring the cpap machine.
Come to find out, I'm uninsurable in the private market. Denied for everything, even $5000+ deductible plans. Well shoot I think, well there are the high risk pools that the new legislation created to bridge until 2014 when the pre-existing denials go away, I'll just jump on one of those. Check the price schedule, $184 a month for someone my age with a $2500 deductible. Perfect.
Not so fast buddy, those plans are only available for those who have been uninsured for 6 months and I was covered under a group health plan at my last job. Well crap. I did have one company offer me a plan with awful coverage and exclusions for anything related to apnea for $1200 a month, but fark that...
So bottom line, I guess I'll go on Cobra through my former employer to maintain my coverage, and I have 18 months to live my life of self-employed, and then I'll be forced to take a job with group benefits so I can have health insurance... depending on the legislation not getting rolled back in that time.
I can't imagine what it must be like for someone who is actually ill to get insurance.
So yeah, I'm considering voting straight ticket democrat this year.
I'm pretty irked actually. I'm highly skilled in my field and as an independent consultant I'm on track to nearly double my former salary. I may have to just tough it up and work for a corporation... sigh.