Letter to the Editor: Healthy NY rate hike

Dear Editor:

Recently notice of NYS Healthy NY HMO Aetna's 2012 proposed rate hike and request for commentary was sent out. The rate hike is approximately going up by 26% for next year. This monthly payment is a sincere hardship for sole proprietors and small businesses.

We are only informed of Aetna's HMO rate hike proposal, not about any other HNY HMO's proposed rate hikes. There is also no way to gather other people together who are also in this situation and make a group complaint. This asks people to individually raise their voice to be counted.
Healthy NY began as a great program for myself and my husband who are free-lancers and individual business people. We were fortunate to qualify for the program a few years ago. It has until recently been affordable.
We are both in the age gap of bordering on retirement and not yet old enough for medicare or sick enough for disability.

Yet as an early sixty something married couple we need health care in order to sustain our current vigor. This includes working and affording our own health care. Our jobs require physical robustness and need the support of a good health plan.

The proposed rate hike is quite ridiculous in our view -we definitely are falling into the gap of can we afford this?

Next year's proposal for a couple with rx, is over $1,049 up from $737 2 years ago which puts the rate up by (2010) 16%+ (2012's)26%= to a 42% increase in just over 3 years.

In addition to this monthly payment, there is the cost of medication to stay healthy and out of the need for urgent care.

Every month our health bill is increased by roughly another $100. This cost is more than we are paying for mortgage payments!

Healthy NY was established to fill a gap in those that were not covered in regular situations or able to benefit from employer health plans.

Let's keep it that way. We adhere to the plan by doing everything we can to stay healthy and hardy. Now we consider the fear of falling away due to insurmountable cost.

I urge you to be informed of this matter and help keep rates at current levels.


Michelle Spark

Phoenicia, NY 12464

845 6882893