Is anyone surprised?
We received our new rates for the cost of the health insurance that we offer to employees. The single rate increased 21% and the family rate increased a whopping 27%. I surveyed other WNY health insurance plans and they all have similar increases.
Click here for the ongoing documentation in this blog on the issue. If you can stomach it.
This is not a local New York phenomenon - you will begin hearing a lot of press on this issue now that the October and November rates that reflect mandates from the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act ('so-called ObamaCare') are being implemented. Headlines out of a neighboring state are similar. Insurance companies claim that removal of lifetime limits, removal of pre-existing condition waiting periods, and assorted other mandates are responsible for driving up the costs.
What this will mean, of course, is that fewer families will be able to afford insurance - which will lead to the accelerated collapse of a medical system that is trying to provide care for people who can no longer afford coverage. If people try to afford health insurance plans they will opt for plans that provide fewer and fewer benefits - and the real kick in the teeth is that even the tax benefits for some health FSAs are being reduced - which is another sucker punch delivered directly at the middle class.
Our politicians/social engineers couldn't get a national health plan in the front door, so this is the next best thing from their perspective. When no one can afford to purchase insurance (employers or their employees) I suppose everyone will fall into some version of a government option.
Bottom line: People had options on who to elect, and then people learned that elections have consequences, and then the system consumed the people who elected it and ironically has taken away all of their options. Sad.