How The Obamacare Rollout Is Really Being Experienced

Tyler Durden's picture

As the New Year brings the actual implementation of Obamacare, it appears in reality things are not as great as many were promised. A recent Gallup survey found that only 7% called their Obamacare experience "very positive" with a stunning 29% seeing it "very negative." But as The Daily Mail found, from Northern Virginia hospitals turning away sick people because they can't determine whether their Obamacare insurance plans are in effect to high deductibles and long waits for authorizations; as many as one-third of the administration's claimed 2.1 million enrollees remain unsure of their coverage. The 'lie of the year' in 2013 may be even bigger in 2014.


Via Mail Online,

No one knows if they are covered...

Hospital staff in Northern Virginia are turning away sick people on a frigid Thursday morning because they can't determine whether their Obamacare insurance plans are in effect.


Patients in a close-in DC suburb who think they've signed up for new insurance plans are struggling to show their December enrollments are in force, and health care administrators aren't taking their word for it.


In place of quick service and painless billing, these Virginians are now facing the threat of sticker-shock that comes with bills they can't afford.


'They had no idea if my insurance was active or not!' a coughing Maria Galvez told MailOnline outside the Inova Healthplex facility in the town of Springfield.


She was leaving the building without getting a needed chest x-ray.



'The people in there told me that since I didn't have an insurance card, I would be billed for the whole cost of the x-ray,' Galvez said, her young daughter in tow. 'It's not fair – you know, I signed up last week like I was supposed to.'

The x-ray's cost, she was told, would likely be more than $500.


And no one knows for sure of those who signed up - how many have actually paid?

Galvez said she enrolled in a Carefirst Blue Cross bronze plan at a cost of about $450 per month through, three days before Christmas.


'No one has sent me a bill,' she said.


Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testified... 'Some may have paid, some may have not,'


The government's advice?...

"We're telling consumers if they're not sure if they're enrolled they should call the insurer directly," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney old reporters on December 2.


But the insurers are overwhelmed by the numbers...

The Washington Post reported that day that because of computer glitches in the 'back end' of, enrollment records for as many as one-third of new insurance customers were corrupted or otherwise contain errors.


Given the Obama administration's latest claim that 2.1 million have signed up nationwide, that means as many as 700,000 Americans might falsely believe they have a current health insurance policy.


Mary and others like her, who took the time to enroll but may not follow the daily flood of news about Obamacare, likely don't know one way or the other.


'Why is this so complicated?' she asked. 'I had my own private insurance last year, but they cancelled me in November. I'm not sure which end is up.'


Private industry estimates put the number of policy cancellations as high as 4.7 million in the last quarter of 2013, mostly involving health care plans that didn't meet the Affordable Care Act's strict minimum standards.


How Life Changes Affect Your Care?

How Long Will Doctors Keep Providing Service For Free?

President Obama has attracted widespread criticism, and a 'lie of the year' award from one newspaper's fact-checker, for promising that Americans who liked their health plans would be allowed to keep them.


Dr. John Venetos, a Chicago gastroenterologist, told the Associated Press on Thursday that he is seeing 'tremendous uncertainty and anxiety' among his patients who signed up for Obamacare plans but don't have insurance cards.


'They’re not sure if they have coverage,' Venetos said. 'It puts the heavy work on the physician.'


'At some point, every practice is going to make a decision about how long can they continue to see these patients for free if they are not getting paid.'


But even then... people have apparently been misled into believing Obamacare is 'affordable' - it appears not...

Her Carefirst plan, identified on the Obamacare website as BlueChoice Plus Bronze, carries a $5,500 per-person deductible for 2014 – an amount she would have to pay out-of-pocket before her coverage would apply to medical expenses.




A similar situation frustrated Mary, an African-American woman small businesswoman who asked MailOnline not to publish her last name. She was leaving the Inova Alexandria Hospital in Alexandria, Virginia with two family members.


'I had chest pains last night, and they took me in the emergency room,' Mary said. 'They told me they were going to admit me, but when I told them I hadn't heard from my insurance company since I signed up, they changed their tune.'


She told MailOnline that a nurse advised her that her bill would go up by at least $3,000 if she were admitted for a day, and her doctor told her the decision was up to her.

As Gallup found:

Fifty-nine percent of Americans told Gallup pollsters that they have had negative experiences with the Affordable Care Act, according to the public opinion giant's latest survey.

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Motorhead's picture

Obamacare, bitchez!  (You asked for it, you got it!)

Ying-Yang's picture

The website is so bad they must have planned it to be.

As a database website programmer you would have to do this on purpose to end up this way. I could tell you the obvious but go play on it yourself and see what a billion dollars of our tax dollars has bought.

So getting passed all this. The Great 2014 Employee Dump onto the Marketplace is coming to an economy near you.

Then guess what happens?

Spungo's picture

Doctors all move to a cash-only system that causes prices to come down?

Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

This is just the roundabout way of herding us into single payer. They couldn't take the direct approach, so here we are. Then they will slap another payroll tax onto your paycheck. You WILL pay us. BitcheZ!

Rainman's picture

Bring it ! ....Free Shit Army morale is gettin' LOW !

DosZap's picture

The issue is the welfare state Wictums,thought SIGNING UP gave them coverage,they failed to make the payments for coverage upon sign up.

zaphod's picture

Pretty sure most of those whinning in this article voted for this program. They get what they deserve.

BTW, those who signed up, but were then denied health care and later develop complications will probably end up sueing the governement, causing me to have to pay for this twice....

Colonel Klink's picture

My schadenfreude has been aching all day.  Anyone know if it's covered under Obamanationcare?

WillyGroper's picture

He's really showing us how much he cares. It must be getting ready to blow

NoDebt's picture

Like I said before, DYING time is here.

wee-weed up's picture



Not to worry...

Obama's sycophant MSM will be all over this news!


dunce's picture

The worse this gets the better. Elections are determined by the middle because the right and left are roughly equal. These swing voters put the democrats in complete power for the first two years. They need to suffer big time to learn the error of their ways.

philipat's picture

When the "Normal" cost of an X-Ray is $500, you know that Obamacare is only part of the problem. It will fail for the very reason that it neither understands, nor addresses, the fundamental problems with healthcare in the US, which is more than double the cost of other OECD countries yet with worse outcomes. In fact, it is SO poorly designed and implemented that one would be forgiven for thinking that it was actually designed to fail, so that a "Single Payer" system could "Come to the rescue". At that pont, .Gov would control about 65% of The US economy, slightly higher than that well known capitalist enclave; France.

  1. Medicaid will boom (Unbudgeted). Physicians seeing Medicaid patients will dramatically decline so these patients will present at A&E, the most costly way. This will push up Provider costs which will push up premiums.
  2. The young will not enroll. Why would they when they can now enroll if necessary if they get seriously ill?
  3. That results in "Adverse selection" whereby only the old and those already sick will enroll. That will push up Insurer costs and increase premiums.
  4. The increased premiums will result in fewer people enrolling going forward, especially the young.
  5. Wash, rinse, repeat.

Incidentally, according to the NYT, Physicians comprise around 17% of the top 1% of income earners in the US.

HardlyZero's picture

Just a small point on #2 is for all that do not enroll...if they need care during the non-enrollment period (9 months in the year) then they will be outside all plans.  The wait-to-get-sick plan only really works well for 3 months every year.

drchris's picture

Unless, of course, a certain somebody decides they want to change the "law" again. Deadlines have been fairly meaningless thus far.

WillyGroper's picture

Stare & compare.

Think it's not related to ACA. FFS, I can't quit laffin. 

GIS - Cornucopia, BHO, DF

GIS Wired - GMO


fedupwhiteguy's picture

when that is set up, then all they will have to do is redefine what "mentally ill" is.

"Obama proposes gun control measures for mentally ill"

Ying-Yang's picture

Bingo Spungo.... most of my doctors are considering this.

Go long black market healthcare... the new normal.

mofreedom's picture

I believe companies will pool the dollars they once sent to the insurance companies into a cooperative network of doctors and insurance, no value-added-less paper-pushers...simply letting doctors do what they do without demoralization.

Health insurance ain't a benefit if there ain't no health.

Make it Work!!!

max2205's picture

My dog says his vet is excellent. ...I am calling after this Colorado weed wears off....whew!

Parrotile's picture

Quality healthcare comes with a quality healthcare price tag.

If you expect a "budget" price tag you can expect "budget quality" healthcare. The best providers can, and will, expect "appropriate compensation" - those Porsche Cayennes don't grow on trees you know.

NOTaREALmerican's picture

Re:  Doctors all move to a cash-only system that causes prices to come down?

Dream on.   More likely:  Doctors hire sociopaths who figure out how to loot ACA like they have Medicare for the last 40+ years.

Life is about screwing the dumbasses.   If you look around the table (of life) and can't see the looters that's how you know you're one of the dumbasses being screwed.

Dingleberry's picture

Tons of docs already do this. The problem is peeps are so broke (or value tattoos and cellphones more than their health) that they don't or can't part with the cash to do so.

Even without insurance, you are still looking at 50-100 bucks for an office visit. 

It should make prices come down. But Obamanites do not want low cost health care.

They want FREE.

Freddie's picture

I have insurance but I am probably going to go with one of those Christian ministries plans.  It actually works the way insurance should work:

1. No govt involvement.

2. No co-pays or deductibles.

3. Lower cost.

4. Doctor gets paid.

5. The govt, HMOs and insurance companies are cut out of the picture.

People need to start boycotting all the companies that support Obama and the Democrats who passed this starting with Warren Buffet's - Geico, JNJ, Wells Fargo, See's Candies, Coca Cola, and as many of his shitty companies as possible.   Boycott ***king TV and Hollywood who support this shit 110%. 

Notice how the stars for ObamaCare are starting to disappear?   Until corporations, billionaires, TV, Hollywood and the rest get hit hard in the wallet - nothing changes.

aVileRat's picture

When the first few people start to die due to failed health care coverage, an excellent RNC strategy would be to remind everyone just what their "celebs" propped up. I wonder how many A-listers would suddenly become C-list overnight ?


VD's picture

it's gonna get uglier before it gets catastrophic : mark these words....inept 'community organizerz' that never worked private sektor gigz in their lives r gonna fix everything and i got some amazing sickcare for cheap to sell u...

Xibalba's picture

Another bailout coming....this time for Insurance Companies.  

What's a good acronym for it?  OBGY, Obamacare Bitchez Got Ya? Or SICK, Stabaliztion of Insurance Companies Komrad?  

HardlyZero's picture


It rhymes, and it makes non-sense.

texas sandman's picture

Sorry to bring reality to the woman with the $500 x-ray, but with MaoBamaCare she'd STILL be liable for's called a deductible. 

jekyll island's picture

There's part of the problem, no one knows how much health costs. $500 for a chest X-ray? No effing way, it's under $100 and that probably is too much.

DosZap's picture

There's part of the problem, no one knows how much health costs. $500 for a chest X-ray? No effing way, it's under $100 and that probably is too much.


Yep, and I just underwent back surgery and was outpatient in hospital for 6 hrs, and the bill for HOSP alone was $17,856.00.

Add surgeon, and anathesiologist,and it will kick $50k in the head,30min surgery.

Parrotile's picture

A plan AP / Lateral series should not come to much more than $140 (that's Aussie dollars too), including reporting. $500 is more likely the price tag for a CT Chest (which seems about right in terms of our local costs)

adr's picture

CT scans are like $4000 in Amerikka.

All Bronze plans have a $10k deductible and don't cover prescriptions or medical tests until your deductible is hit. You also only get two covered doctor visits per year. The good news is that her plan is probably free after the tax credit.

You pay $400 a month for a health plan that doesn't cover anything health related.

Parrotile's picture

That IS a lot of money, if your figure of $4k is correct.

The figure I suggested (chest CT) would be pretty much the absolute max you'd expect to pay (before the Medicare reimbursement) in Sydney. Further "out in the sticks" (Regional, not necessarily Rural) Aussies balk (loudly, and continually) if asked to cough up $340 for a Chest CT!

NO-ONE "Down Under" would even consider paying that sort of money for a fairly basic imaging.

StychoKiller's picture

Let's say you're right and the xray costs only $20 -- WHO's gonna read it for you? (hint, they're called radiologists, and they don't work for free!)

adr's picture

It's not hard to learn how to read an X-ray. In fact most basic medical care is easy.

ForTheWorld's picture

How much extra would you add to cover the cost of an xray to account for the radiologist? $5 per xray? $10? I decided to do some rough calculations (using some actual figures for machines from, and this is what I came up with (I'm probably on the low side though):

Rent $4000/mth
Electricity $500/mth
Water $100/mth
Sewerage $100/mth
Insurance $1000/mth
XRay Machine $2000/mth (I found a used xray machine for $140,000 on
Complimentary Food (Tea, Coffee etc for the office) $100/mth
Receptionist $3200/mth ($20/hr * 5 days * 4 weeks)
Radiologist $4200/mth
Xray Tech $4000/mth
Office fit out $1500/mth

Total Cost: $20,700/mth.

If an xray practice only did 20 sets of xrays per day, and only charged $50 per set of xrays, and only worked 5 days per week, then they make $20,000 per month. At $500 for an xray set, they make $200,000 per month, which would cover their entire base costs for the year in just over a month.

Of course, they can charge whatever they want, because there's almost always going to be someone who NEEDS to pay that high a price.

DosZap's picture

Just go to the ER and claim chest pain, and shortness of breath, you WILL get seen, and if U pay the bill it's up to you.Next time same routine, just a different hospital.

Bastiat's picture

. . . and enjoy the collection agencies.

WillyGroper's picture

Give 'em your best friends info.

Like an asshole neighbor that called LEO on your kid for nothing.

Of course they're prolly going to get prints off you in the process to match your DL.

Fascist pigs!

Oath_Keeper's picture

They are definately gonna get it. How long before the animals in the streets appear?

j0nx's picture

The 100,000 illegals in NoVa are not used to being told that they can't get free medical attention in the ER. This is a new experience for them and one they surely will not appreciate since most of them voted for the messiah.

Surging Chaos's picture

"You see?! This is why we need single-payer!"

Spungo's picture

As a Canadian, I always wondered why the US didn't have government healthcare. Now I understand. THIS is the kind of shit your government does. Government healthcare in the US probably wouldn't even have death panels; it's assumed you're going to die unless otherwise stated.

NOTaREALmerican's picture

One of things that has made America great is that that we (Americans) despise each other so much.    That's why we don't have a government healthcare system; well unless you're an entitled OldFart living on SS welfare then it's ok because unlimited hip-replacements isn't socialism, but Americans don't despise old people that much - well, they might now..   I don't think OldFartMedicare would pass now-a-days...    Ok, so, yeah,  we pretty much despise everybody.

DosZap's picture

WHY are they ENTITLED?,because they paid for it.SS is not wefare either dipwad, WE also paid for that.(as u r).