A middle-class San Francisco couple who campaigned for Barack Obama and support the Affordable Care Act are frustrated that under the system it imposes they will lose a health insurance policy that has more than met their needs.
Lee Hammack, 60, and his wife, JoEllen Brothers, 59 were informed that their $550 a month coverage from Kaiser would be canceled at the end of the year because it does not meet Obamacare standards, Breitbart reported.
Hammack said he and Brothers were in very good health — "exercise, don't smoke, drink lightly, healthy weight, no health issues, and so on."
The proffered replacements to their current insurance were all more costly and offered fewer benefits. The couple's income makes them ineligible for a federal subsidy, they say.
The two initially hoped the problem could be "straightened out." Under the new plan, they will pay nearly $1,300 a month; their $4,000 deductible per person goes to $4,500, and their out-of-pocket maximum rises from $5,600 to $6,350, they say. Doctor visits and medications may also be higher.
In a recent Boston speech
, Obama acknowledged said Obamacare was intended to help the underinsured as much as the uninsured by insuring minimum levels of coverage and getting rid of what he called "cut-rate insurance."
"Remember, before the Affordable Care Act, these bad apple insurers had free rein every single year to limit the care that you received, or use minor preexisting conditions to jack up your premiums or bill you into bankruptcy," he said.
"So a lot of people thought they were buying coverage, and it turned out not to be so good."
But journalist Charles Ornstein,
who examined such policies, asks: "What is going on here? Kaiser isn't a 'bad apple' insurer and this plan wasn't 'cut rate.'"
Meanwhile the couple has written to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, asking for her help.
They say they remain Obamacare supporters, but admit to feeling "hurt" by the president's insistence that if their plan was cancelled "it's because it wasn't any good."
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