Still get health insurance from your employer?

Do you still receive medical insurance from your company?

The share of Georgians who got health insurance through an employer dropped sharply between 1999 and 2009, AJC writer Carrie Teegardin reports, citing a new study.

Rising costs prompted fewer small companies to offer coverage and the recession forced some workers out of jobs with benefits, Teegardin writes.

Among Georgians under 65 years of age, 59.8 percent had employee health plans during 2008 and 2009 — down from 69.3 percent during 1999 and 2000, according to a study by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The change was also fueled by a decline in the share of Georgia employees willing to pay rising premium and out-of-pocket costs for employer-based coverage, Teegardin writes.

What is your situation?

Has your company eliminated or reduced benefits? Raised employee costs?

How have you responded and why?

- Henry Unger, The Biz Beat

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter.

69 comments Add your comment

Everyone took a hit

June 22nd, 2011
7:02 am

In 2009, everyone took a pay cut at the small company that I work at. Over the years our health care deductible has risen substantially. I am fortunate, my employeer considers this benefit to be essential. If the owners of the company were not as comitted, they very well might have made cuts in this area by droping coverage for many of us employees.

I suspect that my company is unusual in this regard. Everyone in my company has access to the same plan.

We need a national health care system. Every other advanced country in the world has some form of a single payer plan. To add injury to injury, we pay about twice as much for our health care as does any other country and in general our medical outcomes are not as good (see World Health Organization’s rankings and other independent studies).

irmaanaya

June 22nd, 2011
7:04 am

Starting this year your child (or children) cannot be denied coverage simply because they have a pre-existing health condition. If you don’t have insurance for you and your children search “Penny Health” online they are the best.

Road Scholar

June 22nd, 2011
7:08 am

If you hadn’t noticed, health care over the past 10 years has increased in cost by an average of 6-7 %. The increases in response to the new legislation is nothing new. I have HC insurance from my employer even though I’m retired.

I agree with Etah above; we are he richest country in the world, we spend more on HC than any other country, and some sreamlining is needed on costs. We need single payer , sort of group rates, to keep the HC industry honest.

For those who say no, why wouldn’t you want affordable HC?

Darko

June 22nd, 2011
7:20 am

Thanks to new regulations my insurance from my employer now costs more and covers less. If you want the government, which has yet to create an agency that is well run, to be a single payer system – my hat’s off to your eternal optimism but I’m not willing to be my health on it working.

Road Scholar

June 22nd, 2011
7:27 am

Darko, same with mine…years before the legislation was debated and passed! Were you paying attention then?

Laurie

June 22nd, 2011
7:31 am

My employer still provides health insurance which covers the family. Like most people, I’ve seen the premiums go up every year, while the deductible goes up and some previously covered services become eliminated. How obnoxious for Americans to think we couldn’t learn a thing or two from other countries who have more sucessful healthcare systems than we do. It’s like we are trying to re-invent the wheel.

Obama Hussein

June 22nd, 2011
7:39 am

Let me clear. Our goal is to make employers drop coverage so you all pick up gubment offered coverage.

And let me be clear. It will be as well run as any military hospital, VA, DMV or Post Office. Sleep tight and learn to speak Hindi because your doctors won’t be American-educated.

Buzz G

June 22nd, 2011
7:45 am

Canadian socialized medicine has gotten so bad that they now come to the US for their heath care. When our health care goes to hell under Obama, they will have to go somewhere else. And so will we.

Barry

June 22nd, 2011
8:00 am

Now, now, my children.
I will make everything right. Sick?
Come and take the Mark of the Obamanation and I will grant you access to my doctors.

Georgia Needs Health Insurance

June 22nd, 2011
8:30 am

The one thing I dont understand is why the Northern states such as New York has affordable health insurance for single adults and the Southern states like Georiga does not. Alot of single adults can not afford health insurance on their own. Alot of these companies pay low wages and do not provide health insurance. Aren’t we in the bible belt? It seems like the northern states are more Christian and care for their fellow man than the southern states. Nothern states have high taxes but any and everyone has access to shelter and health insurance whether they can afford it or not. This is why alot of people do not mind paying higher taxes.

Mr. H. Jublome

June 22nd, 2011
8:44 am

I ain’t go no insurance, cause like the people her say the goverment can’t do nothing right!

Glenn

June 22nd, 2011
9:13 am

For the first time in the last 10 years our companies premiums actually went down . Go figure .

Thank you , President Obama

American Citizen

June 22nd, 2011
9:15 am

I have been working as a temp for year and a half – full time, but no benefits. There are lots of positions like this where I work. I can get Peachcare for my child, which is wonderful; I was self-employed when my older children were little, there was no Peachcare, and I could not afford health insurance. Fortunately, I’m very healthy, and have had no “accidents.” I prefer paying out of pocket in general since I don’t have high medical bills. A monthly premium would be much more than I pay now for checkups, etc. But I would prefer to have some kind of coverage just in case.

JJ

June 22nd, 2011
9:20 am

Not only do we have insurance at my company, they pay 100% for our entire family. Now THAT’S a great benefit. We also have an FSA account, which we can put money on once a year, and it covers most health related items. I can use it to pay my co-pay at the doctor and dentist, I can use it for RX’s and things like bandaides.

They money is taken out of my check, pre-tax, like the 401(k).

Sam the Sham

June 22nd, 2011
9:26 am

Where are the republicans? They were re-elected into the house last year on a platform of anti-universal healthcare, but they have yet to introduce a solution to the health insurance crisis. If they can identify the causes of these skyrocketing costs and address them, then maybe we can get back to 70% coverage and won’t need nationalized insurance.
Get to work republicans or be prepared for 2012 (again).

Songbird

June 22nd, 2011
9:27 am

Buzz, your comment about Canadians coming here for healthcare is just not true. There may be a few isolated cases but it’s not a significant number. This is a myth spread by people who are against single payer. Do a little online research yourself and you will learn the truth.

RGB

June 22nd, 2011
9:41 am

“…..they [Republicans] have yet to introduce a solution to the health insurance crisis.”

That’s a boldfaced lie and you know it. (Read below, apologize later.)

But 2 surveys of employers released within the last 10 days stated that between 78 million and 100 million employees will lose their private health coverage since their employer plans on dropping coverage as a result of ObamaCare. Obama’s goal was to cover 35 million uninsured (many of whom didn’t want coverage) at the expense of 100 million people losing their coverage. Sound like a good tradeoff?

Obama and the Dems want this to happen because when they control your healthcare, they control you. Costs will skyrocket as we’ve never seen before, coverage will decline, and people will be sicker as a result. The 15 member, unelected rationing board will decide what treatments you can and cannot have.

I’m reminded of the woman who said that when Obama takes office she’ll no longer have to pay for gasoline or for her home mortgage. And you people still believe you’re getting “free stuff”.

————————–
For the “Republicans still haven’t offered a plan” idiot:

May 20, 2009 – The Wall Street Journal

Republican congressional leaders are finally offering a clear alternative to the health-reform plans being developed by the White House and Democrats in Congress. The goals and the rhetoric of both sides are remarkably similar: cover the uninsured, allow people to keep the coverage they have, provide more choices of affordable health insurance, and rein in health costs. But their policy prescriptions are remarkably different.

Democrats are uniting around proposals to vastly expand federal regulation of health insurance, require everyone to have coverage, and compel employers to provide federally prescribed insurance or pay a new tax. A new Medicare-like insurance plan is still being debated, but even if it doesn’t make the cut, Congress could regulate its way to a government-dominated market.

Four Republicans in Congress — Sens. Tom Coburn (Oklahoma) and Richard Burr (North Carolina) and Reps. Paul Ryan (Wisconsin) and Devin Nunes (California) — will today introduce a bill that moves away from federal centralization. Aptly called the Patients’ Choice Act, it provides a path to universal coverage by redirecting current subsidies for health insurance to individuals. It also provides a new safety net that guarantees access to insurance for those with pre-existing conditions.

The nexus of their plan is redirecting the $300 billion annual tax subsidy for employment-based health insurance to individuals in the form of refundable, advanceable tax credits. Families would get $5,700 a year and individuals $2,300 to buy insurance and invest in Health Savings Accounts.

Low-income Americans would get a supplemental debit card of up to $5,000 to help them purchase insurance and pay out-of-pocket costs. They would have an incentive to spend wisely since up to one-fourth of any unspent money in the accounts could be rolled over to the next year. The combination of the refundable tax credit and debit card gives lower-income Americans a way out of the Medicaid ghetto so they can have the dignity of private insurance.

The great majority of Americans with job-based health insurance would see little more than a bookkeeping change with the Patients’ Choice plan. But implicit in the policy is the acknowledgment that our system of tying health insurance to the workplace is not working for upwards of 45 million uninsured Americans.

PT worker

June 22nd, 2011
9:44 am

Thanks Obama and the liberal Democrats. Since you took over congress in 2006 we have had the longest running recession since the depression, unemployment has gone up to 10.2 percent at its peak and the budget deficit has double, 3 Trillion under the fake, fraud and fool Obama. Because of Obamacare my employer and his insurer has raised rates 20% and there is talk about paying more out of pocket and even dropping healthcare insurance. The consequences of government irresponsible action to solve a problem private business can do. I have noticed some clinics that treat the uninsured have closed also and some doctors I talk to are preparing to retire because the great 2010 Healthcare Reform Act. So thanks Democrats and spineless Republicans for turning the US into the United Europe-Greece-Spain-Portugal-Ireland-States.

shaggy

June 22nd, 2011
9:50 am

If you really want to “fix” healthcare, make the providers post their prices, like a resturant menu.
Then, the competition would take hold. You could really shop services, and they would have to be more efficient.
No question, it would work, but it will never happen, because the providers and insurance companies would lobby EXTREMELY hard to stop it. They don’t want you in control.

PT worker

June 22nd, 2011
9:50 am

Sam the Sham the Republicans have introduced bills however they will not get pass the senate and Obama will veto them. During the debate the Republican proposed a bill that would allow you to purchase insurance across state lines, it was HR 3400 but the Democrats at that time and the media did not let the public know about it so there is no transparency in this administration like Obama said he would have. Many people did not know about it, I think Congressman Tom Price help with the bill but Obamacare was passed through bribes (Cornhusker kickback and the Louisiana purchase) 2 Senators were given special treatment.

Counterpoint

June 22nd, 2011
9:52 am

“How obnoxious for Americans to think we couldn’t learn a thing or two from other countries who have more sucessful healthcare systems than we do. It’s like we are trying to re-invent the wheel.”

How obnoxious for you to make an untrue statement about healthcare systems in other countries!

“Canadian socialized medicine has gotten so bad that they now come to the US for their heath care.”

So true! No less than 4 years ago I got to experience Canadian healthcare, while in a job exchange program with my company. One of the things the benefits department assured me before I went there was that my family could get immediate transportation back to the US if needed. Luckily, my family never had to use it but another co-worker had to have their CHILD privately flown back to the US because of “issues” with the system in Canada.

Global companies are having to add extras layers of that same kind of healthcare benefit when they send their employees to work in other countries.

We are lucky here in the US. The problem that faces our healthcare system has to do with the entitlements and the many that have abused the system. There is a medical file much like a credit file on each of us, so there is already a track record of what you have done in the medical world. I can promise you those that are complaining are the very ones that have a lously “medical history” when it comes to buying health insurance, etc. Much of the downfall of our healthcare system is self-induced, another thing you can look in the mirror and blame on yourself.

If you would have been responsible for yourselves and your families you would not be in this situation. And don’t expect people like me and my family to pay for lously mistakes you continue to make.

The entitlement attitude in this country is what is destroying it.

Ponder

June 22nd, 2011
10:05 am

It is not coincidental that our healthcare system started to decay as Immigration (legal and illegal) started to rise.

professional skeptic

June 22nd, 2011
10:23 am

Why should our employers be saddled with the burden of providing health care coverage? It only puts them at a disadvantage to their foreign competitors.

Discuss the Topic!

June 22nd, 2011
10:35 am

I notice that only 4 of you so far have discussed your own insurance situation as the topic asked. Off onto the usual boring attacks on the Obama health care legislation, Democrats, Republicans, and now (snore) illegal immigation. Would be much more interesting to hear the reality of how people manage,(r don’t, to stay insured at their workplaces.

WHR Insurance

June 22nd, 2011
10:41 am

If you have lost health insurance through your employer or looking to decrease costs contact us today! We are appointed with all of the health insurance companies and can shop around and find you a lower rate. 678-809-3490 or online http://www.whrinsuranceadvisors.com

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
10:42 am

Current employer dropped coverage. I must spend out of pocket $5000 per year before my insurance company spends a penny which they have never had to do. My sister is in the same boat only her yearly out of pocket expenditure is $8000 and both of us have individual, no maternity coverage. While my company is doing very well, I haven’t gotten a raise in 3 years and since December 2011 my premiums have gone up almost 50%.

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
10:43 am

Now if you want to get political, the USA has a higher infant mortality rate than Cuba even though our per capita expenditure is 10X as much

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
10:45 am

If you think the wait in Canada is bad, try going to a doctor’s office in the USA with high deductible health insurance but no $$$$ in your pocket because you’ll be waiting until you have $$$$ in hand.

Elite Elizabeth

June 22nd, 2011
11:03 am

“Current employer dropped coverage. I must spend out of pocket $5000 per year before my insurance company spends a penny which they have never had to do. My sister is in the same boat only her yearly out of pocket expenditure is $8000 and both of us have individual, no maternity coverage. While my company is doing very well, I haven’t gotten a raise in 3 years and since December 2011 my premiums have gone up almost 50%.”

Sounds as if you and sis are real whiners. If you don’t like or jobs or the benefits offered, seek employment elsewhere!

Elite Elizabeth

June 22nd, 2011
11:06 am

“Now if you want to get political, the USA has a higher infant mortality rate than Cuba even though our per capita expenditure is 10X as much”

Well you and sis should move to Cuba! Oh nevermind, I just rememebered that they don’t let immigrants invade their country! ;)

Elite Elizabeth

June 22nd, 2011
11:09 am

“If you think the wait in Canada is bad, try going to a doctor’s office in the USA with high deductible health insurance but no $$$$ in your pocket because you’ll be waiting until you have $$$$ in hand.”

You may want to shadow an illegal alien the next time you are in that situation. No insurance or $$$$ required when your not a citizen!

tl

June 22nd, 2011
11:13 am

WHR – go somewhere else and pay for your advertisements. I’m not so sure that you ad follows the code of ethics an insurance agent is suppose to adhere by.

LMAO

June 22nd, 2011
11:15 am

“Would be much more interesting to hear the reality of how people manage,(r don’t, to stay insured at their workplaces.”

You really need someone to lay that out for you? And you are looking to entitled, lazy, liberal bloggers to give you nuggets of gold?

JD

June 22nd, 2011
11:17 am

Jan 2009 our employer put us all on contractor status meaning NO benefits at all. After 20 years, we lost our insurance, 4 weeks vacation, paid holidays, sick days etc. We also now get a 1099 and to pay self employment taxes. My boss is a true democrat and was a state rep for 30 years. He knew what was coming down for the small employers. What gets me is he paid more in taxes last year than ever. Had he maintained our insurance, it would have been a deductable expense and therefore would have lowered those taxes significantly and we could go to the doctor when we needed to.

Bobby

June 22nd, 2011
11:19 am

@Elite Elizabeth You are such a pompous biddy, to be polite.

I have excellent insurance through my employer along with prescription coverage, vision, dental and long and short term disability. My rates have gone up but they are not too bad. I work for a small to medium company and bless the ground the owner’s work on, despite not having raises for the past 4 years. Have no idea what I would do if my employer dropped coverage as I’m uninsurable outside of employer health plans.

[...] Still get health insurance from your employer?Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)The share of Georgians who got health insurance through an employer dropped sharply between 1999 and 2009, AJC writer Carrie Teegardin reports, citing a new study. Rising costs prompted fewer small companies to offer coverage and the recession forced …Will Obamacare Destroy Private Insurance?Mother JonesNew report shows drop in employer-provided health insuranceAustin American-StatesmanReport finds health care coverage in state erodingSignOnSanDiego.comReuters -Red, White, and Blue Press -MedPage Todayall 97 news articles » [...]

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
11:30 am

Statements of fact aren’t whining. If you want whining, listen to Sarah Palin or Glen Beck.

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
11:31 am

Who would have thought that after working my way through college and honorably serving in the US Navy, that service from military doctors & hospotals would be better than private care?

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
11:35 am

Recent data provided by the nation’s largest health insurance companies reveals that a provision of the Affordable Care Act – or Obamacare – is bringing big numbers of the uninsured into the health care insurance system.

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
11:36 am

According to a Kaiser survey, there has been a 46% uptick in businesses with less than 10 employees offering health benefits as compared to last year.

JB

June 22nd, 2011
11:42 am

BuzzG: “Canadian socialized medicine has gotten so bad that they now come to the US for their heath care.”

WRONG. That is just straight-up not true. Not true at all, with no evidence to support it. Maybe wealthier Canadians come to the US for elective procedures, but I have yet to see a news story about hospitals in Maine, Vermont, Minnesota, etc. becoming clogged with suffering Canadians. They pay an average of $56 per month per person and never have to worry about going bankrupt because they happened to get sick when they were in between jobs, or took a risk and started a new business… I don’t care * who * gets my healthcare insurance money as long as it gives me that kind of FREEDOM. Freedom is NOT simply about how we spend our money but how we are ultimately able to live our lives!

It’s my personal opinion that the corporate sector of the US has been so unhelpful or silent on a national healthcare system because it reduces the potential for competition – people won’t go out on a limb and start up new businesses if there is a lack of access to affordable healthcare for them and their children as they get started.

Elite Elizabeth

June 22nd, 2011
11:47 am

“If you want whining, listen to Sarah Palin or Glen Beck.”

So you (lovelyliz) learned to whine from Sarah Palin & Glenn Beck? I have never followed them so thanks for the warning! :)

Worth Repeating ...

June 22nd, 2011
11:54 am

…. “So true! No less than 4 years ago I got to experience Canadian healthcare, while in a job exchange program with my company. One of the things the benefits department assured me before I went there was that my family could get immediate transportation back to the US if needed. Luckily, my family never had to use it but another co-worker had to have their CHILD privately flown back to the US because of “issues” with the system in Canada.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Thought I’d repost since everyone seems to like listening to their own hot air but refuses to acknowledge someone who has actually experienced the world of socialized medicine.

[...] the rest here: Still get health insurance from your employer? – Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) June 22nd, 2011 in Health News, Health in General | tags: angeles-times, atlanta-journal, [...]

[...] the rest here: Still get health insurance from your employer? – Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) June 22nd, 2011 in Health News, Health in General | tags: angeles-times, atlanta-journal, [...]

something has to change

June 22nd, 2011
1:13 pm

I’m going to try to stay on topic here and not get off on a republicans suck/democrats suck debate.

I had a job with really good insurance. I paid about $75 a month but I hated the job so i did what anyone would do and I got another one doing something I actually like. On the day I was supposed to start my new job, I got sick. Really, really sick. I ended up going to the ER and they told me that I had a kidney infection, a really bad one. I was admitted into the ICU (I told you it was bad). I had 2 days left on my coverage and then was going to have to do Cobra. I had to pay for a month and a half of cobra (based on when my insurance was going to kick in at my new job). It was almost $1000 for 1.5 months of insurance. Now, I am glad that I could get Cobra because all in all this little adventure had a price tag of 80k of which I had to pay $600 of out of pocket (besides the premium). However, that is a lot of damn money! I have friends who have to buy insurance out of pocket because they are self employed or maybe work for a small company and some of them have to pay $800 a month for a family of 4 to have insurance. $800 a month for most people is a lot of money and it’s just sad.
I don’t know what the answer is but I do know that all this bipartisan BS is not helping at all.

williebkind

June 22nd, 2011
1:50 pm

Why are the premiums going up! You have heard of “cause and effect”?
Is it because RN gets $17+ an hour. Hospitals are nonprofits so why does a bed costs $300+ a night. Look around! It is your friends and family who are in the medical field and they want to get rich by 55. That is a fact and it is worse than the school system. I have heard all the retorts like if you were dying and needed help…blah blah blah. Again why is the cost of insurance high? Another reason is we can not cross state lines to purchase cheaper but good insurance. Insurance companies run this country not congress.

[...] Not AppeasedMedPage TodayMcKinsey defends controversial health reform surveyBusiness InsuranceAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog) -Reuters -Palisades Hudson Financial Groupall 103 news articles [...]

Libral Dimakrat

June 22nd, 2011
2:07 pm

lovelyliz

June 22nd, 2011
11:30 am
Statements of fact aren’t whining. If you want whining, listen to Sarah Palin or Glen Beck.

No, dear, if you want whining (without facts); let me recommend Chrissy Matthews, Rachel Maddow, Ed Shultz, and O’Donnell..they’re on that My Show is Nothing But Crap channel.

Factoid

June 22nd, 2011
2:14 pm

“Why are the premiums going up! You have heard of “cause and effect”?
Is it because RN gets $17+ an hour. Hospitals are nonprofits so why does a bed costs $300+ a night. Look around! It is your friends and family who are in the medical field and they want to get rich by 55. That is a fact and it is worse than the school system.”

Illegal immigrants who don’t pay a dime into our healthcare, education and economic systems and reap the benefits of our entitlement systems. The Insured are paying for the Uninsured, many of which are by choice. You can think that $300 a bed to an illegal alien that sucks our country dry!