You’ve probably heard the words “Medicare for All” a lot lately. That’s the idea of signing the whole country up for the same health insurance provider: the US gov. Fans of the plan — like Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and other Dems — have different ideas about the specifics. Like whether you could still get insurance through work if you wanted to.
We have a few more debates...and an election…to figure it out. But here’s what Medicare for All could mean for your wallet.
Your out-of-pocket costs could go away. Under Medicare for All, you might not pay insurance premiums (those monthly payments that come out of your paycheck). Same goes for copays and deductibles. All of that would be on Uncle Sam’s tab instead of yours. According to a Kaiser Family Foundation survey, you could save about $1,200 per year in premiums alone if you get insurance through work.
But your tax bill could go up. There are a lot of estimates for how much all this would cost. But no one thinks it’ll be cheap. And that money has to come from somewhere...probably your taxes. Some say that could cost more than what you’d save.
You won’t lose insurance when you're between bosses. If you aren’t splitting healthcare costs with your employer, you won’t lose your coverage when you change jobs.
“Out-of-network” won’t be a thing. Without private health insurance, you won’t have to pay attention to which docs and hospitals are considered in-network. Because, theoretically, your network would be...just about all of them. Critics argue the influx of patients means it’ll take a LOT longer to see your favorite doc. And that the quality of care could go down.
theSkimm: Depending on who wins the Oval in 2020, the US might be saying ‘bye’ to private health insurance. That would change the way the entire healthcare industry works...and how you budget for medical costs. Watch this space.