Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Obama-Bush Years Saw Employers Reduce Health Insurance Coverage

The Census Bureau released poverty and health insurance coverage data today.  While rising poverty figures grab the headlines, a disturbing trend continues in employer sponsored health care coverage.  Consider how many people were covered at work before the George W. Bush and Barack Obama Imperial Presidencies

70.4% of Americans got employer health insurance in 1999
The Bush years sent millions of job overseas and employer coverage imploded:

58.3% received employer provided coverage in 2008
President Obama's low wage job recovery comes with reduced or no benefits:

55.4% had employer health insurance in 2014
That's a 15% decrease from 1999-2014.   Employees know the difference in coverage in 1999 vs. today.  The need to choose between food, rent, electricity and medicines continues as millions of Americans are underinsured, i.e. can't afford care due to high out of pocket costs.

Employers reduced health care coverage in more ways than one.  That trend should continue under PPACA, as it's an unstated aim of the law according to Obama advisor Dr. Ezekial Emanuel..

By 2025, “fewer than 20 percent of workers in the private sector will receive traditional employer-sponsored health insurance.
The shedding will need to ramp up over the next decade for Ezekial's prediction to come true.

Update 9-17-15:  Naked Capitalism noted the bad hand employees have gotten the last two decades

Update 9-23-15:  The LA Times also noted the shift of health insurance/healthcare costs to employees.  Shifting costs to employees has long been part of the plan.