Go pour yourself a glass of something and sit down. This will take a while.
So…last month, my buddies at Covered California called me on April 8 to tell me that the deadline to make my initial payment was April 10. I never did get the letter with the PIN I was supposed to use to pay them. I gave them my credit card number, flinching at the $351.01 (don’t forget the penny). Oddly, my insurance was effective April 1, or a week before I made the payment. April Fool’s?
A couple of weeks later, I received my membership card and instructions on how to register on line. Needless to say, the website did not recognize the membership number on my card, so I was reduced to calling the behemoth bureaucracy.
When I finally got through to an actual person (who was quite nice), I got the bad news, and then the bad news:
- Dr. Sue and the entire clinic are not covered by the très expensive insurance. So I can either go to a whole new, unknown doctor or keep paying for the annual visit myself. So I’ll be paying $351 a month for insurance I can’t use (unless something really bad happens – always a possibility).
- Because they were so late in billing me this month – apparently, the bill that went out yesterday should have gone out on the 22nd, they are billing me for May and June at once, or $702.02. Yay!
I have to say, I’m not vey impressed with this whole thing. I do not find the Affordable Care Act affordable at all. Even though my job is supposed to defray $400 of the $702, that still leaves me with a $300 payment for insurance I can’t use, and that’s not even considering all the bureaucratic idiocy that accompanied the entire process. It’s been a complete débâcle from start to finish, and the end result seems to be that I’m paying a lot for nothing.
Later: Just got a letter dated March 27, sent to my house’s address rather than the mailbox where I actually get my mail, telling me that I owe my first premium. Which I paid last month. Did I mention that one of the first things they asked me on the phone today was my mailing address, which they said matched their records? You can’t make this up!