Letters to the Editor

Letter: Cost of health insurance

Referring to the recent news of next year’s 16% increase in monthly health insurance on the federal marketplace in Alaska, the article states that 24,000 Alaskans are using the Healthcare.gov marketplace, with an average monthly premium of $1,106 set for 2024.

That means either directly or (most likely) by federal subsidy, the two health insurance providers in Alaska will receive a total of nearly $319 million in premiums. That is a stunning number given that none of their plans cover emergency services until after an individual has paid $6,350, and only then 30% of the cost above that. So, if you go to the ER, not only do you pay an annual premium of $13,272, but you also pay up to an outof- pocket maximum of $8,700.

And if you’re a family of three, your premium is more like $28,000 per year. How is any of this affordable?

If your employer is paying, then you’re just missing out on a larger salary, so the true cost is hidden from you. But for the small percentage of Alaskans who are self-employed, the cost is more than a car and, well, you may be better off moving to the Lower 48.

— Dan Frank


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