Many families make too much money to qualify for assistance, but on the other hand paying for individual policies breaks the bank as well.  BD

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Volunteer firefighter Cindy Holland has no medical insurance, and her husband's health benefits as a full-time paramedic do not extend to family members, so she and their three children go without.

The hard-working Northern California family makes too much money to qualify for public health insurance but too little to afford a private policy, caught in a Catch 22 that puts many U.S. workers at risk of financial ruin.

"It would kill us financially to do the insurance -- if we want to keep a roof over our head and food in my kids. You end up rolling the dice," said Cindy, a California native who works a pair of part-time jobs on top of firefighting.

That number is widely believed to be higher today as healthcare costs skyrocket, employers slash worker benefits and insurers gut coverage and cherry-pick the healthiest customers.

Source: Health care crisis squeezes working families | Health | Reuters


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