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Affordable Care Act Premium Increases Hit Small Business Owners in Their Pocketbooks

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT:  Kristofer Eisenla, LUNA+EISENLA media
kristofer@lunaeisenlamedia.com | 202-670-5747 (mobile)

National Association for the Self-Employed Rebuke 2017 Announcement As, “ Less Choice and Higher Prices”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With news from the Obama Administration that the silver-level plan insurance premiums in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will rise by 25 percent next year, the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE), the nation’s leading advocate and resource for self-employed and micro-businesses, today released the following statement rebuking the announcement. 

The news came yesterday in a new report issued by the Department of Health and Human Services titled, “Health Plan Choice and Premiums in the 2017 Health Insurance Marketplace.”  The report outlined that the expected average increase in silver plan, significant because it provides the benchmark by which tax credits are calculated, will average 25 percent.   While on average, exchange customers will have only 30 insurance plan options to choose from in 2017, a decrease from the 47 plans available to the average customer the previous year.

“America’s entrepreneurs and self-employed are already struggling in our weak economy to make their bottom-lines.  Since many entrepreneurs earn too much and don’t qualify for federal subsidies, this rate increase will hit them in their pocketbook preventing them from saving, growing and expanding,” Katie Vlietstra, Vice President for Government Relations and Public Affairs of NASE. “The Obama Administration’s position on tax subsidies ignores the reality that many Americans, including the self-employed, aren’t eligible.  Therefore, at the end of the day this increase will likely result in our members and many others dropping to a less desirable plan or even doing something drastic by risking the penalty for no coverage.

“While the original goal of the Affordable Care Act was to provide affordable and flexible health care to the American worker, the opposite seems to be true: less choice and higher prices. In addition to the news earlier this year that insurance plans are leaving the Exchanges, which will offer fewer choices, now America’s small businesses – the self-employed and micro-businesses, who are in the individual marketplace – will potentially see an increase in their healthcare premiums by as much as three times over the previous year’s.

“We encourage the next president to work with the new Congress to rectify this hardship on the American worker and find solutions to ensure the ACA is affordable, flexible and works for everyone.”

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The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) is the nation's leading resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses, bringing a broad range of benefits to help entrepreneurs succeed and to drive the continued growth of this vital segment of the American economy. The NASE Small Business Locator helps identify and connect our nation’s smallest businesses. In addition, NASE’s new health care portal helps small business owners navigate the nation’s health care marketplace. The NASE is a 501(c) (6) nonprofit organization and provides big-business advantages to hundreds of thousands of micro-businesses across the United States. For more information, visit the association's website at NASE.org

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