A few days ago, we asked our supporters to send us questions about how Amendment 69/ColoradoCare will work. With the misinformation to protect health insurance company profits coming from the other side, we wanted to share the facts directly with you. Here are some of the questions and answers.
Rick in Durango asked:
I am 70, on Medicare and Anthem supplemental. I also work part time on a self-employed basis. I would like to learn how ColoradoCare will affect my supplemental insurance?
Medicare will remain your primary coverage, and ColoradoCare will work as your supplemental policy-at significant savings for almost everyone on Medicare. By passing ColoradoCare, every Medicare recipient will have access to supplemental care without going through the corporate insurance industry system.
Christopher in Boulder asked:
If someone is currently receiving Medicare, will their premiums go away and will they start paying 10% of their net income?
You’ll only pay the tax on the portion of your income that is subject to state taxes after applicable exemptions, and, yes, you’ll have the option to eliminate your premiums for supplemental care. Colorado offers substantial exemptions for retirees, with up to $46,000 of Social Security and retirement income exempt for individuals and up to $75,000 exempt for couples.
Once you take those exemptions, your premium tax would be 10 percent of your remaining income, and that premium tax should be deductible, so your effective rate would be between 5.5 percent and 8.5 percent. Most retired Coloradans will save thousands of dollars by replacing their supplemental with ColoradoCare.
David in Fort Collins asked:
I currently have an insurance plan that allows me to just pay a small copay for my prescription medication with no deductible. If the law goes into effect and I switch over to the state run plan, will my medication still be covered?
ColoradoCare will equal or surpass the benefits of the best plan on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchange and Medicaid. This is because waivers for the ACA and Medicaid will set a minimum standard of benefits that are the same as the comprehensive benefits that the ACA and Medicaid have established nationwide prior to ColoradoCare. However, benefits may be increased by the Board of Trustees beyond these established programs into dental, hearing, vision, and other areas. Not only will patients continue receiving the coverage they receive through their current provider, under ColoradoCare’s system, the coverage will be enhanced for most Coloradans.
Zero deductible for office visits, but what’s the max out of pocket and deductible for surgery, cancer, etc.?
ColoradoCare will be free of deductibles. Period. In the face of the status-quo insurance industry which forces far too many hardworking families into bankruptcy, Amendment 69 offers freedom from deductibles for every Colorado resident. Without deductibles, you’ll be better able to understand and predict what you pay. That’s part of what will makes ColoradoCare a simpler, better health care system for everyone.
Maria from Denver asked:
20 percent of Colorado is already covered by VA/Medicare/etc. so how are you making this a true single payer? and eliminating the middle man / paperwork / etc so that people save money?
For patients covered by Medicare, VA, or other programs, ColoradoCare will function as a supplementary insurance program filling in the gaps. Medicare will continue to serve as seniors’ primary coverage with ColoradoCare serving as secondary coverage. In the current system, many seniors cannot afford the Medicare deductible, copayment, and Supplemental Plan costs, and Medicare has gaps in vision, hearing, and dental.
Under ColoradoCare, all of the benefits of Medicare would continue, and in addition, ColoradoCare would provide a Medicare Supplemental Plan that eliminates deductibles and waives copayments for financial hardship. The program will function similarly for veterans, 1 in 10 of whom do not have access to any health care. And everyone will have access to the quality care they deserve — with no premiums, deductibles, or out-of-network surcharges.
Our communities deserve what Amendment 69 offers: affordable, comprehensive health care for every Coloradan through a “Medicare-for-All” style system.
Will you stand with us against the status-quo?