Health-care law uncertainty grips Old Town Alexandria cafe — and other small businesses
Whether he moves forward with expansion depends on the price tag of the requirements mandated by the Affordable Care Act, President Obama’s signature health-care initiative.
How long since Obamacare has been passed?
Nearly three years after the health-care law was passed, federal regulators have only recently begun to define its terms. Major pieces of the overhaul, such as state-run exchanges that will serve as marketplaces for qualified health insurance plans, have yet to take shape, and several rules remain unwritten. Consequently, the picture remains anything but clear for small-business owners, some of whom have been warned that their premiums may spike and that their current coverage may fall short.
Sounds like the definition of amateur hour to me.
Questions Abound in Learning to Adjust to Health Care Overhaul
Meet Rachel Shein and Steve Pilarski, the married owners of Baked in the Sun. The owners are having to deal with the choices presented to them by Obamacare.
Obamacare is penalizing them for their success compared to smaller competition:
“It’s ironic that our success meant we could grow,” Ms. Shein said, “and now we will be competing against smaller companies, with 50 employees or fewer, who will be able to charge less per item because they don’t have the financial burden of health insurance.”
Also of interest is the attitude of their younger employees…
However, she has found many of her employees resistant to coverage that requires an employee contribution. “They are mostly young and healthy,” she said. “They don’t have a lot of extra money, and they would rather have a bit more in their paycheck than health insurance.” Also, she said, some of her Mexican employees prefer to go south of the border for inexpensive health care when they need it.
Seems to me this could be an issue for Obamacare in general. If the younger/healthier generation opts to pay the penalty and avoid coverage pricing will increase for the remaining enrollees.
The owners are deciding which of the following three options to select:
- Provide the insurance
- Not offer health insurance and let employees find coverage elsewhere
- Outsourcing certain jobs to reduce the staff, because businesses with 50 or fewer employees will be exempt from the penalty
Rachel estimates the cost to cover her younger employess at $200 per person. I believe she’s being too optimistic.
Read the whole thing.
Democrats have doubts about Obamacare too
Two-thirds of Democrats now believe Obama’s health care reforms will either hurt them personally or have no effect on their daily lives, a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday shows. In comparison, just 27 percent of Democratic respondents said the reforms would help them.
TWO THIRDS? 66%. Wow, guess they had to pass the bill to read it. Or course, then there’s the issue of being able to keep your doctor and insurance plan if you like it.
Obamacare: A promise betrayed | The Daily Caller.
During the debate over Obamacare, President Obama assured the American people, “No matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period. If you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away. No matter what.”
Natalie may lose both.
“I can’t say how disappointed I am because I believed him,” laments Natalie.
Talk about a broken promise.
Daily Caller: The human face of Obamacare’s broken promises
- Rosemarie Battaglia, a senior citizen from Texas, is on Medicare Advantage. Last month, the Medicare agency issued regulations that will reduce her health benefits, starting April 1, by thousands of dollars every year. Because coverage costs are expected to increase on average by $2,235 a year, Mrs. Battaglia has postponed her retirement indefinitely.
- Hugh Joyce, owner of the 150-employee James River Air Conditioning in Richmond, Virginia, recently told the Washington Post that his insurer has warned him to expect an 18 percent spike in his company’s health insurance premiums next year.
Why? To help pay for Obamacare
Medicare: Sequestration Cuts Small Compared to Obamacare Cuts.
But if Medicare patients can’t access vitally needed care because of $6 billion in total reduced Medicare payments, they’d better prepare for next year. That’s when Obamacare cuts an estimated $41 billion out of Medicare—in addition to the Medicare sequestration cuts of $9 billion that year.
Sequestration may put Medicare in a straightjacket, but if a straightjacket with $6 (2013) billion in cuts is better than a flexible straightjacket with $41 billion not counting sequestration we have a badly mismanaged program.
Related: Cancer clinics are turning away thousands of Medicare patients. Blame the sequester.
An analysis prepared by his clinic estimates that, if the full 2 percent cut takes effect, between 50 and 70 percent of the drugs it administers would become money losers.
Paul Mirengoff: Let the Democrats sleep in the Obamacare bed sooner rather than later
In regards to pushing back implementation of Obamacare:
I think I would prefer that Republicans not support legalizing delay. The more of Obamacare that is implemented soon, the better it’s likely to be for Republicans in 2014. And Republicans may get some mileage from the Democrats’ inability to implement certain provisions within the period mandated by their law. If Republicans agree to delay, that argument is basically off the table.
Nor would holding the administration’s feet to the fire leave Republicans bereft of ammunition for 2016. The pain Obamacare is likely to inflict will be more acute by then in almost any scenario.
Of course, implementation of a portion of Obamacare for small business has already been delayed.