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How Much Will Obamacare Cost You?

Updated: Tuesday, September 10 2013, 02:12 PM EDT
Big changes are coming to your health care.  In just a month, enrollment begins for coverage under the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare.

Those exchanges are designed for people currently uninsured, but will your premiums go up or down?

Grace White explains how much it will cost you.

For Keli Martinez, a single mom taking care of two boys, health insurance is an after-thought.

Keli Martinez, "I haven't had health care in 6 years."

And she's not alone.  For millions of uninsured Americans the affordable care act is supposed to change that,  but at what cost?

Dr. Ed Schumacher, Trinity University, "the economic theory says that is should lower prices but there's a whole lot of unattended consequences."

In Ohio, state officials say the average premium is $236.29.  Next year, under the new health care law, they estimate the cost will rise to $332.58.

Dr. Ed Schumacher, Trinity University, "there's things that insurance companies didn't have to cover that now they do have to cover."

Dr. Schumacher says if you take a young healthy person, they can buy insurance on their own for relatively cheap. But when they go into the exchanges set up by the government where for the most part they are charging a consistent price for everyone, that individual is going to pay more."

Dr. Schumacher, "the fact that we can have our children on our insurance policies until they are 26 is great for individuals with young adults but everybody else has to pay for that, by having slightly higher premiums, so there's all those little things that are going to make premiums slightly higher."

Dr. Virginia Mika, Carelink: "there's a lot of unknowns."

Dr. Virginia Mika is the Executive Director for Carelink, it's a financial assistance program in San Antonio, Texas.  Carelink plans to help many of it's 53,000 uninsured clients enroll in the new healthcare exchanges.

Dr. Virginia Mika, Carelink: "for people who already have insurance through their employers, they probably won't see any change in their premiums but for people who have not had insurance they will have to go into this marketplace and pick a product and see what subsidies they qualify for."

The lower your income, the more you can save.  For example, a family of four, with a household income of $50,000, according to the kaiser foundation's calculator the premium for them in 2014 would be $9,869.  Of that, the family pays $3,365 and the government pays $6,504 through subsidies.

Keli Martinez, single mom: "cost is definitely a factor, I can't put the child support I get into my own health care."How Much Will Obamacare Cost You?


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Enrollment for healthcare exchanges as part of healthcare reform begins October 1 in states where exchanges will be set up. Expect special reports each week from us about what you need to know about 'Obamacare' and the ongoing political fight about its future.

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