Monday, July 19, 2010

Massachusetts Employee Private Insurance Dropped: Massachusetts Penalty Cheaper than Premiums

 Small businesses in Massachusetts are dropping health care coverage for employees and relying on "publicly-funded insurance" for their workers. Paying the state penalties are cheaper than paying the premiums.

Since April 1, the date many insurance contracts are renewed for small businesses, the owners of about 90 small companies terminated their insurance plans with Braintree-based broker Jeff Rich...
In Sandwich, business consultant Bill Fields said he has been hired by small businesses to enroll about 400 workers in state-subsidized care since April, because the company owners said they could no longer afford to provide coverage.
“They are giving up out of frustration,’’ Fields said of the employers. “Most of them are very compassionate but they simply can’t afford health insurance any more.’’
Massachusetts is the proving ground for the national plan. Republican Mitch Romney (Mass) shuttled the plan through when he was governor and when you look it square in the face, you see the genetic similarities. The Romney plan is much like the Obama plan - unfortunately for Romney who wants another run for the presidency in 2010. Massachusetts has gone before the rest of us and when it comes to health care, it isn't pretty:
Additionally, company owners say, it has become far cheaper to pay the state penalty for not covering their workers -- roughly $295 annually per employee -- than to pay thousands more in premiums.
The administration's health care legislation is not in play yet, but we have an excellent window into the new law from the state of Massachusetts. 

Senators Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) estimate almost 100,000 people will lose their employer-based insurance once the federal plan goes into effect. Do you want to venture a guess at what happens to the insurance companies?

Want to venture a guess about what happens after your employer chooses to change his company's health care plan? To make it better...make it worse? An employer cannot change a single thing about the health care provided for workers. The minute the plan is changed in anyway, it is no longer grandfathered into the national health care legislation and employees become a part of the governments health care plan. Eventually, and probably not a very long eventuality, the only insurance will be single-payer, meaning the U.S. government insures everyone - unless we stop them at the polls in November.

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