INDIANAPOLIS – Rep. Braun finally confessed this week that his company sticks its employees with $5,000 and $10,000 deductibles, but he still couldn’t understand just how costly his health care plan actually is for Hoosier families.
During an interview with WISH-TV that aired Wednesday, Rep. Braun for the first time admitted that his company forces its employees to pay $5,000 or as much as $10,000 out of pocket before their insurance kicks in. It was a reversal for Rep. Braun, who spent weeks hiding from the scale of his company’s deductibles, even though they’re listed publicly in his employee benefits guide. CNN and Politico have also reported on his company health care plan and its massive deductibles.
While Rep. Braun is finally talking about the company’s deductibles, however, that doesn’t mean he sees the problems with his company health care plan. Instead, Rep. Braun went on to downplay his plan’s problems, insisting that the average employee only paid a little over $1,500 into their deductible.
Not only is this beside the point — employees fighting cancer or a similar catastrophic health problem would still need to pay as much as $10,000 out of pocket before their insurance kicked in — the average deductible nationwide is only $1,500, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. That means that an American who gets disastrously sick on an average health care plan — not a good plan, but an average one — would still have to pay less out of pocket for their medical care each year than the average Meyer Distributing employee pays.
Rep. Braun’s Wednesday comments are in keeping with his unfeeling views towards health care coverage. Rep. Braun has repeatedly talked up his health care plan and billed it as a potential nationwide model, but his employees have described it as “horrendous” and said that it was “not real insurance.” Rep. Braun has also fired employees when they were ill and even tried to backdate their termination to get out of covering their medical costs.
“Rep. Braun may finally be willing to admit that his plan has deductibles of up to $10,000, but just because he’s stopped blatantly lying when confronted with the truth doesn’t mean he understands how disastrous his health care plan is. I guess when you make $18 million in profit every year, you simply don’t understand how damaging paying $10,000 out of pocket would be for most Hoosiers,” said Michael Feldman, spokesman for the Indiana Democratic Party. “Hoosiers simply can’t trust Rep. Braun with their health care.”