The Investment Scientist

Posts Tagged ‘health care cost

images-37Today I sat down with a bunch of professionals for our quarterly wealth management meeting. As the talks turned toward the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, I realized the mal-functioning website is the least of its problems.

In our group there is a professional, Andrea, who specializes in helping small to mid-sized businesses procure group health insurance. Andrea said insurance companies are cancelling old plans and giving their customers “upgraded” plans that cost more and provide less benefits.

This hasn’t just been happening in isolated cases, but is rather wide-spread. Why? For one, the ACA has many mandates, such as covering reproductive health. So if a man’s insurance plan does not cover a pap smear, he just lost his plan! OK, I made this up for comedy, but Andrea did mention a 55 year old woman losing her plan because it did not have maternity benefits.

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Healthy Lifestyle

Longer life spans, rising medical costs, declining retiree medical coverage, and Medicare and Medicaid insolvency all add up to making health care costs a serious challenge for folks preparing for retirement.

According to Fidelity research, a couple retiring today at age 65 will need current savings of $200k to supplement Medicare and pay for out-of-pocket health care costs in retirement. In another five years time, the number could balloon to $275k. And that’s before we talk about long-term care.

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Author

Michael Zhuang is principal of MZ Capital, a fee-only independent advisory firm based in Washington, DC.

Twitter: @mzhuang

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