The Obama Administration demonstrated its normal incompetence in front of the entire country when its three-years-in-the-making ACA enrollment website crashed. But, now that that the furor has subsided how is Obamacare doing?
Let's start with the impact on business. A recent survey indicates that a sizeable majority of business executives, 82% in fact, think the ACA will not control health care costs nor will it improve the health care system's efficiency.
ACA will help my company more effectively control health care costs,” while another 82 percent disagree with the statement that “the ACA is improving the efficiency of the health delivery system.” As costs rise employers are considering converting their plans to a "defined contribution" approach, under which the employer would give an employee a fixed amount to be used to buy coverage. If the experience with the infamous "cash balance" pension plans is any precursor, this approach enables employers to hold costs down to reasonably predictable levels simply by capping its contributions.
Another approach being widely considered is to increase deductibles and co-payments. Regardless of the means used fundamental employers will be aggressive in shifting costs to the "end users"; i.e., the employee and dependents.
Because ACA also imposes a 40% excise tax (comonly referred to as "the Cadillac tax", since it only applpies to very "rich" plans. Since unions tend to have the most rich plans, its members will be hardest hit. And efforts by union-members' employers to hold costs down is already causing collective bargaining issues in both the private and public sectors.
The new "slacker tax" is already impacting costs. That is the mandate that any adult child under age 26 can be covered under the parents' plan. The costs of that will, like all costs, be borne by the employer and the employee--even those without "slacker kids".
All of this points to costs increasing; not, as promised, dropping by $2,500 per family. In fact, based on the Congressional Budget Office's estimates, the cost of EVERY newly insured person will run taxpayers $53,192 over the next decade.