Broker slammed with questions about healthcare policies ending - WKRN News 2

Top broker slammed with questions about healthcare policies ending

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -

It has become a worry for millions of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans.

Many have received an ominous sounding letter saying their individual health care coverage will soon be ending because of the changes brought by the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

It's brought some frantic calls to insurance brokers like Austin Madison, but he has been telling his clients there is no reason to panic.

"When someone gets that letter and it says your plan is ending December 31, that does not mean they are not going to get coverage, they will be able to get coverage," Madison told News 2 on Friday. "The question is will the coverage be identical to what they had? The answer is no, but they will find something that is similar, within the realms of being compliant with the Affordable Care Act."

Madison, who is a partner with The Crichton Group, which is considered the largest insurance broker in Middle Tennessee, says complying with the ACA means health insurance policies must carry a certain level of benefits not currently in some policies.  

He told News 2 his office has been "slammed" since Obamacare was introduced in 2009 with companies and individuals seeking guidance and help navigating the new plans.

Madison indicated that those on some plans now offered, especially young people, will likely see a rise in their premiums, but he reminds clients that the new ACA compliant policies that begin on January 1, 2014 will have more coverage for medical procedures.

The insurance broker said under some of the more bare-bones policies like those with high deductibles and catastrophic coverage, the costs of things like medical checkups would come out of the consumer's pocket.  
 
"At the end of day the responsibility is going to fall on the consumer, if they can't get it online-to call," Madison added in a reference to the glitch-ridden Obamacare Marketplace where people could sign up for coverage.

He said brokers like himself, insurance agents and carriers are set up to help people choose the best options.

Insurance companies like BlueCross BlueShield offer lengthy Web site explanations about the new plans, their cost and subsidies available for lower income indiums and families.

While the Web site healthcare.gov has had numerous glitches for people trying to sign up at the Obamacare Marketplace for insurance coverage, it too has lengthy explanations about the options and costs of the new plans.

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