- Health Care, Drugs & Insurance
Obama's Affordable Health Care (ACA) Has Employers Avoiding It
Few will disagree that everyone in the USA should have health care, many will disagree that making it mandatory is right, no one should be forced to getting it. Yet, that is what president Obama has done that goes into effect in 2014. It is good intentions gone into a mess as many said would happen if passed.
The ACA requires all employers of 50 or more full-time workers to offer affordable health care insurance who work more than 30 hours a week. If they do not, they face fines. Companies large and small all complain about the mandatory health care because the average yearly cost for single coverage in 2012 was $5600 and $16,000 for a family according to Kaiser. In 2002, those figures were $3000 and $8000, respectively. Its quite a jump!
To avoid this mandatory issue, more and more companies from IT to fast food chains are only hiring part-timers who work less than 30 hrs. a week, that way, they avoid having to provide health care. Some employers are reducing full-time jobs and creating two 20 hr. positions. One fast food chain has said it will now only hire part-time workers. One Del-Taco chain of 11 stores converted all their FT staff into PT staff because without doing so, costs would rise to $40,000 a year. Firms hiring M.B.A.'s are hiring for more job-sharing jobs than just a single FT position. While full-time positions are still available, they are growing fewer and fewer as the deadline nears. For restaurants, that have been adding about 50,000 jobs a month, a high percentage of these are part-time. Keep that in mind the next time you hear how many jobs were created in a month as a sign of recovery.
Starting on Oct.1, seven million will start to seek health insurance using online exchanges and will grow to 25 million by the time the new year begins. That is how many must now get health insurance whether they can afford it or not. If they do not, the fine of $100 is used. Many will gladly accept the nominal fine to avoid having to pay $5000 in annual health care expenses, who wouldn't?
Health insurers are also getting ready for the deluge of new people to insure and trying to come up with tiered systems of what they offer online. So far, tests with consumers have both shaking their heads as to the best way to handle the myriad of choices and prices. There is too many things to consider or look for in a plan. The only thing found out is that all consumers rate the monthly cost as the main criteria in choosing a plan and getting the most bang for the dollar.
Since the US has never had a universal government health plan, hopefully it will not be like Ford's ill-fated Edsel car.