Yep, another lie. The White House claimed that the Messiah’s program would force consumers to get rid of junk insurance and buy the real stuff, one that covers maternity care for 60-year-olds and abortion services for males. Turns out – surprise! – there are better alternatives, or used to be.
Walmart offers its employees two standard plans, a Health Reimbursement Account and an alternative it calls “HRA High” that costs more out of employees’ pockets but has lower deductibles. Blue Cross Blue Shield manages both plans nationally.
Also offered is a Health Savings Account plan that includes high deductibles but allows tax-free dollars to be used for coverage.
For a monthly premium as low as roughly $40, an individual who is a Walmart HRA plan enrollee can obtain full-service coverage through a Blue Cross Blue Shield preferred provider organization. A family can get coverage for about $160 per month.
Unlike Obamacare, there are no income eligibility requirements. Age and gender do not alter premium rates. The company plan is the same for all of Walmart’s 1.1 million enrolled employees and their dependents, from its cashiers to its CEO.
A Journal of the American Medical Association analysis from September showed that unsubsidized Obamacare enrollees will face monthly premiums that are five to nine times higher than Walmart premiums.
JAMA found the unsubsidized premium for a nonsmoking gouple age 60 can cost $1,365 per month versus the Walmart cost of about $134 for the same couple.
The medical journal reported a 30-year-old smoker would pay up to $428 per month, in contrast to roughly $70 each month for a Walmart employee.
A family of four could pay a $962 premium, but the same Walmart family member would pay about $160.
Low premiums are not the only distinguishing feature of the Walmart plan. The retailer’s employees can use eight of the country’s most prestigious medical facilities, including the Mayo Clinic, Pennsylvania’s Geisinger Medical Center and the Cleveland Clinic.
Many top-rated Walmart hospitals — such as the Mayo and Cleveland clinics — are left out of most Obamacare exchange plans.
But the real difference between Obamacare and Walmart can be seen in the levels of day-to-day access to doctors and hospitals.
Robert Slayton, a practicing Chicago independent insurance agent for 11 years and the former president of the Illinois State Association of Health Underwriters, described to the Examiner the differences between Walmart and Obamacare provider networks.
“It’s not just the number, but who they are. You’ll find under the Obamacare exchanges that the academic hospitals have declined to participate, along with the specialists who practice at those hospitals. The same is true of cancer hospitals.”
“People who are seriously ill need to stay away from these exchange plans,” McCaughey said.
David Todd, an independent insurance agent based in Little Rock, Ark., also compared the health plans for the Examiner. Walmart’s corporate headquarters is in Bentonville, Ark., and the company has 58,000 workers in the state.
Todd pointed to stark differences between the government plan and Walmart: “If I buy a family plan on the exchange, it’s still $1,000 a month. And I can buy this for … [$160] on Walmart.”
Walmart individuals face a $2,750 deductible and families need to pay $5,500 under the HRA plan. Individuals pay $1,750 and families pay $3,500 deductibles under the HRA High plan.
The deductibles are high, but Obamacare deductibles are higher, going up to $6,300, according to Todd.
Todd looked at a 30-year-old woman who could qualify for the government subsidy. “The nonsubsidized premium is $205 a month for this 30-year-old. If they get a subsidy, then the premium is zero. But that person has to come up with $6,300 if something catastrophic happened,” he said.
The Walmart monthly premium for the same 30-year-old woman would be about $40. Her deductible would be $2,750, minus $250 in cash advance, for a total net deductible of $2,500.
Just as liberals preferred to spend a billion dollars on a non-functioning website rather than ask Amazon for help, they certainly wouldn’t turn to evil Walmart for advice on the health care program itself. “Good intentions” trum profit motive and efficiency, in Bizzaro World.