Average U.S. family pays $3,600 out-of-pocket for healthcare annually

UPI.com | Published: May 30, 2013 at 11:40 PM


An average U.S. family in 2013 pays $9,144 — $5,544 in payroll deductions and $3,600 in out-of-pocket costs. Key provisions of the the Affordable Care, sometimes called Obamacare, to insure the uninsured go into effect in the six months. UPI/Pat Benic 

SEATTLE, May 30 (UPI) — Of the $22,030 annual healthcare cost for a U.S. family of four, the employer pays $12,886 and the employee pays $9,144, an actuarial and consulting firm says.

The 2013 Milliman Medical Index, calculated by Milliman, found the average employee’s share for coverage under an employer-sponsored preferred provider plan is paid through a combination of $5,544 in payroll deductions and $3,600 in out-of-pocket costs.

For employees, this represents a cost increase of 6.5 percent compared with last year’s total employee cost of $8,584, Milliman said.

“We expect that the emerging reforms required by the Affordable Care Act would have little impact on the cost of care for our family of four in 2013 because this family tends to be insured through a large group health plan,” Milliman officials said in a statement.

Most of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act deals with those currently uninsured and those who currently buy individual health insurance coverage out of their own pocket.

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2013/05/30/Average-US-family-pays-3600-out-of-pocket-for-healthcare-annually/UPI-66231369971622/#ixzz2VA5MweQI

Americana Center World Festival celebrates cultures with music, food and wares

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by Maggie Huber

Read More: http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2013306010081

Iroquois Amphitheater played host Saturday to the 23rd annual Americana Center World Festival, Where Louisville Meets the World. Hundreds sampled the festival’s music, food and wares.

With musical acts playing and dancers performing on two stages every half hour, there was plenty to stimulate the ears and eyes. For example, Mamta Subba, 18, performed a traditional Nepalese dance with her friends.

“It’s a rare opportunity to see different kinds of musicians in town,” said Alexander Udis, 28, the community garden coordinator at the Americana Center. “The festival started as a block party for the center and has grown to be the big event of the year when we not only get to advertise what we do at the center, but give a spotlight to all the nationalities that live in Louisville.”

For others, such as Lauren Humpert, “the highlight of this festival is the food,” she said as she waited for someone to cover her Fiberworks booth so she could indulge in food from one of the more than six food vendors.

Odette Nyirahuku agreed as she made beignets for her “Mama Boling” booth. Nyirahuku learned to cook the dishes at the Americana Center as part of a class. “Everybody needs our food,” she said.

Americana Community Center provides a spectrum of services based on the Louisville area’s cultural, ethnic and economic diversity.

Americana World Festival: Americana World Festival | Scenes and interviews (Video by ANGELA SHOEMAKER/Special to the Courier-Journal

Olivetta Uradu, 20, left, and Kade Tambo, 22, right, watch as a band performs on the Hilltop stage at the 23rd annual Americana World Festival at the Iroquois Amphitheater. June 01, 2013

Joyce Augustine, 10, participates in a hula hoop contest for kids during the 23rd annual Americana World Festival at the Iroquois Amphitheater. June 01, 2013

Joyce Augustine, 10, participates in a hula hoop contest for kids during the 23rd annual Americana World Festival at the Iroquois Amphitheater. June 01, 2013

Healthcare reform may spur new generation of entrepreneurs

Self-employed U.S. adults may increase 1.5 million due to ‘Obamacare’ Amarantha Dimyan, held by her mother Jane Dimyan-Ehrenfeld, cries as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks on the Affordable Care Act. UPI/Kevin Dietsch

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Published: June 1, 2013 at 1:01 AM

PRINCETON, N.J., June 1 (UPI) — New research estimates forecast the number of self-employed U.S. adults will be 1.5 million higher in 2014 because of the Affordable Care Act, researchers say.

Andy Hyman, who leads health coverage programs at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, said beginning next year, access to high-quality, subsidized health insurance coverage will no longer be exclusively tied to employment, which could lead people to pursue their own businesses as self-employed entrepreneurs.

Traditionally, individuals considering leaving their job to strike out on their own have worried that they may be denied health insurance coverage because they have pre-existing conditions, fear losing access to a trusted physician, or are unable to afford the premiums without an employer sharing the costs.

As a result, some U.S. workers feel “job lock,” being tethered to their jobs and unable to leave, even if their skills and talents no longer match their position, Hyman said.

The Affordable Care Act provisions might encourage more people to start their own business include:

— No applicant can be turned down because of a pre-existing condition.

— Individuals cannot be charged higher premiums because of their health status.

— Insurers must offer plans with a comprehensive set of essential health benefits.

— Tax credits to help low- or moderate-income individuals and families will reduce premium costs.

— Medicaid expansion, in some states, will provide coverage for those with the lowest incomes.

“By ensuring that people can’t be discriminated against when they buy health insurance and helping those with modest incomes cover the cost of premiums, healthcare reform could help create a new generation of self-employed entrepreneurs,” Hyman said in a statement. “Having access to affordable insurance on the open market is what millions of people need to become their own boss.”

The researchers said evidence of pre-reform job lock — along with empirical research demonstrating a significant increase in self-employment in states that have already initiated some health reforms — strongly suggest the number of self-employed individuals in the United States will increase with full implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

Topics: Healthcare Reform, Robert Wood

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2013/06/01/Healthcare-reform-may-spur-new-generation-of-entrepreneurs/UPI-10271370062915/#ixzz2VA2wz8wu