How Will Your Company Handle Obamacare?

What issue in our nation generates the strongest personal reaction?

1. Economy
2. Education
3. Deficit
4. Healthcare
5. Employment

While my poll is entirely unscientific and my answer is my own opinion, I STRONGLY believe that the topic of healthcare generates the strongest reaction of any issue facing our nation. Why? It’s personal nature, that is, “if you do not have your health, then what else really matters”?

With the healthcare landscape poised to change rather dramatically over the next few years, have you inquired from your company how it may handle the changes under Obamacare? Would your employer tell you? Has your employer fully studied and reviewed the impact of Obamacare on its business?

I want to thank the loyal Sense on Cents reader who shares with us a review of how employers plan on managing under Obamacare.

Three in ten employers will abandon offering health coverage to their employees when President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act takes effect in 2014, according to a survey published by McKinsey Quarterly.

While only 7 percent of employees will be forced to switch to subsidized-exchange programs, 30 percent of companies say they will “definitely or probably” stop offering employer-sponsored coverage, according to the study published by McKinsey Quarterly.

“At least 30 percent of employers would gain economically from dropping coverage, even if they completely compensated employees for the change through other benefit offerings or higher salaries,” the study says, according to Market Watch.

That doesn’t mean too many people are going to quit due to health coverage issues, the study adds.

“Contrary to what employers assume, more than 85 percent of employees would remain at their jobs even if their employers stopped offering [employer-sponsored insurance], although about 60 percent would expect increased compensation.”

As the 2012 presidential elections approach, potential and confirmed Republican contenders are vowing to repeal the so-called Obamacare, including former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich.

“In addition to the unconstitutional nature of individual and employer mandates, we are learning that they simply don’t work,” Gingrich says, according to CNN.

Such measures require the government to specify exactly what coverage must be included in insurance for it to qualify, Gingrich adds.

“The resulting costs to the taxpayer — and strain on the budget — lead the government to try and control healthcare costs by limiting healthcare services. The inevitable result is rationing by a nameless, faceless, unaccountable board of government bureaucrats.”

This last statement evokes real fear on behalf of American citizens. As well it should. We will certainly hear a lot more on this topic as Presidential hopefuls navigate across our nation during the upcoming campaign.

As this survey asserts, I do not doubt that many companies will try to shift an increasing percentage of the cost of healthcare to their employees. Increasing overall costs on employers, especially small businesses, is not conducive to job growth.

Are people around your office talking about this? What are they saying?

About Larry Doyle 522 Articles

Larry Doyle embarked on his Wall Street career in 1983 as a mortgage-backed securities trader for The First Boston Corporation. He was involved in the growth and development of the secondary mortgage market from its near infancy.

After close to 7 years at First Boston, Larry joined Bear Stearns in early 1990 as a mortgage trader. In 1993, Larry was named a Senior Managing Director at the firm. He left Bear to join Union Bank of Switzerland in late 1996 as Head of Mortgage Trading.

In 1998, after 15 years of trading and precipitated by Swiss Bank’s takeover of UBS, Larry moved from trading to sales as a senior salesperson at Bank of America. His move into sales led him to the role as National Sales Manager for Securitized Products at JP Morgan Chase in 2000. He was integrally involved in developing the department, hiring 40 salespeople, and generating $300 million in sales revenue. He left JP Morgan in 2006.

Throughout his career, Larry eagerly engaged clients and colleagues. He has mentored dozens of junior colleagues, recruited at a number of colleges and universities, and interviewed hundreds. He has also had extensive public speaking experience. Additionally, Larry served as Chair of the Mortgage Trading Committee for the Public Securities Association (PSA) in the mid-90s.

Larry graduated Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa in 1983 from the College of the Holy Cross.

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4 Comments on How Will Your Company Handle Obamacare?

  1. Even now my company is seeing growth, but they’ve froze hiring and let go of a number of people because of this. They chose to continue to maintain the same level of health care, but with the added costs this has brought them the money had to come from somewhere.

  2. The rightwingnut ideologues are carping about it, I guess, but nobody else gives a darn. It’s too early to tell what effect this is going to have at my company, which is small (<100 employees), but no one is sounding any alarm bells. I think our owner will continue to provide an insurance plan as long as he is able to afford it. Employees pay probably about 40% of the premiums, currently.

  3. With companies all around the world holding their “health care advantage” (read this as government-sponsored health care) over American company’s heads, it is great to see that U.S. companies will finally start to catch up and become competitive. This can only be done once the health care burden is lifted from their backs. This is better than a tax cut any day.

  4. Isn’t this whole scheme smelling more and more like a tax increase? If we and/or employers elect not to have coverage, and pay the penalty instead, this means we have less income sheltered by a health insurance policy–currently, the monthly premiums are taken out of our checks BEFORE taxes are applied.

    Not only employees lose out on the sheltering, but so do employers, so this is a tax increase on everybody. Then Obama wants to raise income tax rates…

    Now let’s look at the unemployed: their circumstance for health insurance doesn’t change, because the government will continue to pick up their tab, plus some $700 or more a year for the premium. Multiply this number times the 8 million or so currently unemployed–where are the savings again?

    For those who work but can’t afford even that, the government offers a sliding scale–subsidization. If anything, this HCR is going to encourage people to drop out and stay out of the workforce–Uncle Sam will take care of everything!

    Why should we pay for them to exist if we aren’t going to get any return from it? At least with seniors, we already GOT our return before we began shelling out the Medicare and Social Security! Who fought in the wars, who worked in the factories, and who had the kids (now adults) that pretty much run the country?

    In essence, they are rewarding bad health and non-participation in the workforce, while punishing the rest of us who are in good health and have coverage.

    My alternative to this would be to leave things the way they are now, but instill a drive-thru tax, followed by a processed food tax. Medical knowledge is to the point that we know what kills people, what makes them sick, and how much it costs to correct their bad habits with drugs and procedures, SO WHY CHARGE THE INNOCENT BYSTANDERS WITH THE BILL? Go directly to the source, just like cigarette, alcohol, and gas taxes do–those that use them get taxed. Can’t afford it? Quit eating, drinking, smoking, or driving it!

    We already know (or should know) that bad nutrition is the root cause of all illness and disease–whether immediate or handed down through genetics (see “epigenomics”). Bad nutrition genetic code can be over-written, and illness and disease can be reversed or eliminated completely. A simple multivitamin isn’t enough–it’s a start, but not enough. The new ChooseMyPlate campaign is a start, but not enough. A national example through the White House garden is a start, but not enough. All three together might make a sizable dent in disease and sickness, but you’d still need a little more. Throw in the Let’s Move campaign, and you’d be well on your way.

    Maybe after “my” taxes get put in place, people would get the hint and buy more fresh food (or even grow it to pay far less), because at that point fruits and veggies would be cheaper than processed foods and fast foods, and sickness would be greatly reduced or eliminated (possibly even eliminating the need for health insurance altogether)!

    Not only could we do away with the need for nickel-and-dime health insurance (which doctors even abuse), we could also do away with farm subsidies due to higher sales volume of more nutritious foods. Wouldn’t THAT be a money-saver? If only there was political will…[sigh].

    One more thing: starting at age 55, raise the Medicare age to match the Social Security age, and make that 70. It’s up to us to take care of ourselves until then if we want those benefits, and we can’t do that through fast food or processed food. Someday, people will get their health act together to not even NEED these things until their 90’s. They’ll still be working at 70, and plenty of people are right now!

    My proposal: if we know for a fact that Medicare and Social Security aren’t going to be around for us (born after 1965), then our so-called Social Security and Medicare taxes should be credited directly to our IRAs, since we’re going to have to be responsible for our own health and retirement when we get there. This would get more people saving who’d otherwise wouldn’t or couldn’t. Why is it we can afford to fund others’ lives (or even the general fund) when we can’t even afford to fund our own futures?

    At some point, we have to stop funding the dead horse that Congress keeps raping over and over again.

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