Health care for the small contractor is the biggest liability now.
This issue constitutes a hurdle over which economic growth either happens or does not.
also, as i understand it the greater % of personal bankrupcies are based on a health care crisis.
More Wealthy Americans Becoming Uninsured Posted: 11/22/2002
Though it's often wrongly assumed that lack of health insurance is mostly a problem for those in lower income brackets, USA Today reports that wealthy and poor Americans became uninsured in equal numbers last year.
According to Census Bureau figures, 811,000 people with incomes above $75,000 gave up their health insurance in 2001. Self-employed people make up the largest percentage of the high-income uninsured.
Some believe that as more wealthy citizens face this problem, pressure will mount to pass reforms that combat skyrocketing premiums and help the 41.2 million uninsured Americans find affordable health care plans.
"To some extent, it is a very good thing that these middle- and upper-income folks are getting into this fix," Princeton Economist Uwe Reinhardt told USA Today.
The high cost of health care has been the No. 1 concern of NFIB members since 1986. NFIB has fought for the passage of Association Health Plans (AHPs), which would allow small business owners to band together across state lines to purchase health coverage for their families and employees. AHPs can give small businesses the same accessibility, affordability and choice in the health care marketplace that big business now enjoys
Does anyone want to share their costs on health care. Frankly, it is the biggest reason that I am sticking with my day job, at least until my wife re-enters the work force. Has anyone had to utilizte the COBRA program?
I took a voluntary layoff from a company back in the early/mid 80s and 'took advantage' of the COBRA program to maintain my health insurance. I cannot say for sure because it was so long ago, but my rememberance is that I could maintain the same insurance I had, but under an individual policy and not as a member of the group. Therefore rates were much higher and quite unaffordable. Getting insured under a group policy is one of the advantages to becoming a member of an Association.
Costs here for HMO type Family-Plan (no Dental) and a $15 - $20 office visit co-pay are about $850/mo. under a local group plan.
[This message has been edited by Bill Addiss (edited 12-11-2002).]
Sparky: My health insurance (Blue Cross Traditional) only for me, is +/- $1500.00 a quarter. It will increase after 1/1/03, as I hit the 55 plateau. Guesstamate is 1800/2000 qtr. It's good coverage, not an HMO/PPO, etc. My wife has her own coverage, as she has a carear. I offer the same coverage to my employees, paying 50%, with them paying the balance.
Used to be the ins. co. "made out" from me, as I rarely used the coverage, but 2 12 years ago, I had a heart problem. (Irregular rapid heartbeat) and they have been picking up the tabs.
It's a $300 deductable, with 80% of the first 10K. The prescriptions are "discounted" and I get a 80% re-imbursement of the cost.
Healthcare is a MAJOR Expense, and getting more costly by the day. John
Health care is always a huge issue with us. I am a member of the IBEW and health insurance is part of our collective bargaining agreement. Presently my employer contributes $4.35 per hour on my behalf to the heath trust to cover my health benefits. Considering I work an average of 200 hours a month that is about $870.00 per month! Outrageous, isn’t it? It only takes 135 hours per month to maintain the insurance, or just under $600 per month. Still ridiculously high. Costs this year are increasing up to 40%. We are having to take either cuts in coverage or cuts in pay to make up for it. It looks like we will be taking cuts in benefits at the first of the year. I still can’t complain too much. I will be going from paying nothing to $15.00 co pays. Prescriptions are increasing from $5.00 to $15.00 per. Not to bad compared to a lot of people out there. I have a wife and four girls I support, a couple of them with health problems, and haven’t paid for anything for 12 years. That is slowly going to change with the skyrocketing cost though. Each local around the country negotiates its own deal as far as insurance goes. This makes it a hassle when working in other jurisdictions with different contribution rates. There is a movement going on to try and negotiate a national plan. I think it has been blocked at every turn however due to certain special interests. Can you imagine what we could negotiate with almost 1 million members? Probably not in my life time.
I'm 45 yrs old and pay $303 a month for Anthem(blue Cross) 250 deductible. Great deal compared to buying it thru Anthem,Why?. I belong to the Maine Oil Dealers which negoiates with ins. companies year to year. Kinda like a co-op I guess. The old lady has it from work for her and the kid but that will probably change. My family costs would be around $700 a month.
Definetly my biggest concern is insurance, its a terrible travesty that honest working folks cannot afford insurance. Will their even be a middle class in 50 yrs?, the gap between haves and have nots continue to widen. Can anyone justify the salaries given to movie stars, athletes etc when folks who are needed for society to go on(like us ) can't even afford insurance.