Trying to Save Local Sailing While Keeping Healthy
Los Angeles is one of the few places in the country where enthusiasts can choose between sailing or skiing in winter and comfortably do either. I’m lucky that despite selling my boat, I have several friends who routinely invite me to accompany them on the water..
I’ve spent much of the month, trying to avert a disaster for my home port of Marina del Rey, a coastal plan that will cut 800 slips for owners of boats smaller than 35 feet. The proposal seems to be inexorably moving forward putting the interests of the wealthy ahead of the public, but our elected officials don’t listen. Los Angeles County Supervisors are so desperate for cash, that they are selling out the boaters for whom the marina was built. There is one last chance to stop the plan when it has to be presented to the California Coastal Commission.
The biggest anti-aging issue I’ve wrestled with all month is health insurance. For the last three years, I’ve been piggybacking on the Fox News plan, but work there dried up, not only for me but more than a hundred other local news people. Since I’ve maintained my policy under COBRA, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, I can’t be turned down for a new policy under provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, HIPAA, a Clinton era reform that saved me from being unprotected, Unfortunately as a 56 year old male seeking an individual policy, I faced premiums that went through the roof, more than double what I had been paying.
I thought I had found the best of several unattractive options when on January 20th I authorized the initial deduction from my account. On February 1st Health Net decided to raise its premium to me by more than $1000 a year and helped itself to additional money in my account without notice!
So the big anti-aging news for March is that after two months of hoping that a car didn’t pull in front of me while I biked, like LA’s Mayor Villaraigosa, I once again have health insurance. It’s costing me more than $10,000 a year with a $4k deductible.
Some would blame this situation on President Obama’s Health Care Reform. It was a big step in the right direction, but didn’t go far enough in implementing cost controls. Its gradual roll out puts people on notice to get on board, but has left me in a financial bind.
Still, the underlying cause is more demographics than anything else. I might be a 56 year old with a low risk of heart attack, but others in my cohort are primed for a sudden life threatening event.
Since my coverage is basically protection against an emergency, my most cost effective way to handle my insurance is the same strategy we should all employ: stay healthy.
photo of Paul Suchecki by Brenda Varma
Anti-Aging Diary c. 2011 Checkmate Pictures - Paul M. J. Suchecki, Editor