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November 28, 2013 at 1:12 am #609788
I didn’t want to put “Obamacare” in the heading in case anyone was inclined to start a big ol’ debate (again). I’m just starting to navigate the WA state website and wondering if anyone has used the services of a broker/consultant to help understand and select the best coverage? We are self-employed and having to move from a low-premium-but-crappy-coverage plan to something new and I’m not sure how to compare the two.
If you’ve used someone I’d love to hear your experiences! Thanks.November 28, 2013 at 1:45 am #800645
I like your approach, add! I, too, am tired of the Obamacare debates. As far as brokers, I enthusiastically recommend Dan Maizel (email@example.com). Phone: (206) 232-1882
Cell: (206) 388-9684 He’s on Mercer Island, but his schedule is pretty flexible, as far as I can tell. He is very knowledgeable. In fact, I found out about him through a recommendation on the Blog about a year ago.November 28, 2013 at 3:07 am #800646
I’ve tried three so far. Disasters. Didn’t trust any of them, as I always discovered they had an ulterior motive to just finding health insurance in my own best interest. Maybe Dan will be the Man.
In the meantime, my next step is to call Swedish, set up a face-to-face appointment (using the five bucks I owe them as leverage–haha), and see what they recommend. I’ll probably have to cleverly figure out how to get them to give me some real scoop, since it’s probably not allowed that they make recommendations. But being the good customer I am …November 28, 2013 at 5:15 am #800647
I will second “Sonoma’s” recommendation of Dan Maizel. My wife and I have consulted with him for a number of years even before the ACA. He is FANTASTIC, and has 25-30 years experience in the industry!November 28, 2013 at 6:54 am #800648
Kevin, I think you were originally the one who recommended Dan Maizel. And you’re absolutely right – he has tons of experience.December 16, 2013 at 4:49 am #800649
Thanks for the recommendations, I sent an email to Dan. I read in the paper that the deadline for enrolling is 12/23 (for a 1/1 coverage date) … and I suddenly realized that’s next week! Hopefully I will have figured something out by then, or that it’s possible to make a change after signing up. If anyone has any experiences they’d be willing to share about registering, I’d love to hear it. Thanks!December 16, 2013 at 8:10 am #800650
You mentioned that you are self-employed, so be aware that not all of the plans on the Exchange actually offer on-the-job coverage for injuries & work related illness. Many self-employed people I have talked to assume that they are covered because the ads say self-employed people can get coverage through the Exchange. Yes, you can “get coverage”, but it may exclude while on the job!
Case in point- Group Health used to offer self-employed coverage (i.e. for business owners who are not required to have L&I coverage), but they dropped this coverage for all their 2014 plans. Unfortunately, this is NOT listed in their Exclusions section of their online brochures (the fine print says there are other exclusions not listed that you will see in your actual policy).
So, pick your plans carefully!
Also, check which hospitals & providers each plan includes- I was surprised that the Premera Blue Cross no longer includes any of the Swedish locations. There was an excellent article in the Seattle Times a week ago Sunday listing the plans with this information.
Good Luck!December 17, 2013 at 6:33 am #800651
Consulting with Swedish and Premera, I indeed got Premera coverage for Swedish through the exchange for $300 less/month than COBRA. Same coverage/deductible/OOP. Am I missing something?December 17, 2013 at 7:57 am #800652
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