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Affordable Care Act: Financially adjusting

How one family is struggling to afford insurance
KAUKAUNA, Wis. (WFRV)--48 million Americans are currently uninsured. 

Under the Affordable Care Act that group will soon be required to purchase health insurance—something many say they can’t afford. 

“It’s going to be kind of rough,” said Shannon Frelich.

Shannon is a single parent raising three children and is currently insured through Medical Assistance. 

While her children can remain insured, as of January 1st, she will no longer be able to receive free health insurance through Badger Care. 

“I’m kind of forced to decide on whether do I take the work insurance or do I wait until the Market Place opens up and search for insurance through there?” Shannon said.

Becoming insured through her employer would cost Shannon $334 a month.  Plans purchased through the Market Place are estimated to cost between $200-$300.

“There’s still anxiety of what to do.  What insurance I should get pick.  What’s going to be right for me and how much I can afford?” she tells Local 5 News.

Shannon currently makes $2080 a month before taxes.  Rent on her home costs $500 a month.

Utilities are about $150 and she says she spends roughly $250 on groceries and gas.  Take away $300 a month for insurance she’s only left with $1,180 and part of that goes to the government for taxes.

“It’s going to take a lot of budgeting…tight tight budgeting,” she said.

Another worry for Shannon is making her first premium payment by December 15th—just 10 days before Christmas.

“That’s going to be devastating," she said.

But not purchasing coverage, she said would be worse.

“You have to do it. Health is the most important thing we have and so I’ll just have to figure it out,” she said.

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