Health Care Reform a Mixed Bag for Workers
(HealthDay News) – Much discussion of the Affordable Care Act revolves around the dramatic changes in store for America's uninsured, but the health care reform law will also have an impact on individuals with employer-based coverage.
Some workers may find their coverage includes new benefits and protection. For instance, as of 2014, employer-based insurance packages will be prohibited from excluding people based on pre-existing health conditions. Lifetime and annual limits on health benefits will also be banned.
However, there are likely to be some downsides as well as employers find ways to shift costs to their workers. Some employers plan to increase the amount employees need to contribute to premiums, and the migration to high-deductible plans is likely to continue. Furthermore, a proportion of employers intend to cut worker hours to reduce the number of employees eligible for health care benefits.
"The Affordable Care Act is hastening difficult decisions employers have to make with how they provide health care to their employees," Bill Kaiser, area vice president of sales and marketing for the benefits consulting firm Gallagher Benefit Services, told HealthDay.